Sunday, May 1, 2016

Buc Fielders Bumble, Stumble, Fumble in 6-5, 11 Inning Loss To Reds

It was dreary and damp, but game started on schedule. Jeff Locke gave up a one-out double to Billy Hamilton, a grounder over the third base bag, and he stole third. No sweat; Jeff K'ed Joey Votto and retired Brandon Phillips routinely. Tim Adleman put the Bucs away in order. Locke did the same to the Reds in the second; Adleman only faced three batters when Gregory was thrown out trying to stretch a single;. He wasn't going very hard around first; prob a brain cramp to try for two.

After an out, Adleman reached when Locke dropped Jaso's feed to first. Again, it was quickly cleaned up with an around-the-horn DP. The Reds rookie tossed another clean frame; he's filling the strike zone with a breaking ball and two 93-94 MPH heatera, straight and a runner; we'll see he does the second time around the order. Jeff just keeps filling strikes; he 1-2-3'ed the Reds and is at 45 pitches after four. JJ hit into a hard out and Cutch waked, but Josh and Starling looked baffled; both fished and whiffed.

Locke ran his streak of outs to seven in the fifth; Gregory spoiled Adleman's day when a curve broke in the middle of the plate; El Coffee sent it into the Allegheny. Stew drew a two-out walk to turn the order over.

Jeff Locke had a second straight drama free outing (photo Grant Jeffries/Bradenton Herald)

Third time around: Tucker Barnhart opened the sixth with a double and Zack Cozart walked with one gone. Hamilton blooped a pop to left; Barnhart was hung up as it fell just a step in front of Marte, stumbled a bit and was forced at third. But it didn't help. Joey Votto hit a routine grounder, but well placed past an outstretched Josh, to plate the tying run. Votto stole second, fairly secure that with Hamilton at third, he wouldn't draw a throw, and he didn't. Phillips was walked to get to Jay Bruce, who had K'ed twice. This time, he doubled to right; two runs scored and a third was cut down at home, but it's 3-1 Reds. Pittsburgh went down in order, with Cutch's drive to the bullpen fence run down nicely by Hamilton.

Locke rebounded well; he was bit by a two out, two base misfire bu S-Rod at third, but whiffed Adleman. He went seven, giving up three runs on four hits and a walk with six K on 102 pitches. The outing was better than the line; Votto's roller was all that was between Locke and a shutout. Marte opened with an infield knock. That was it for Adleman; Tony Cingrani got the ball.

He fanned Polanco on heaters, but S-Rod turned on one and drilled it into the corner. Adam Duvall made a great effort to run it down and ended up kissing the fence; the speed of Hamilton racng over to back up kept Rodriguez from touching them all. Jordy walked, and Caleb Cotham came in. He got a big out, popping up Stew, but Matt Joyce dropped a broken bat flare between three Reds to tie it 3-3.

John Jaso was clutch (photo Dave Arrigo/Pirates)

Jared Hughes trotted in; he's just off the DL and been BP during camp and at Indy; let's hope he's ready for showtime. No luck with Cozart; he hit a ball almost at Gregory; he misread it, and watched it drop over his head for a two base error. He was moved up a base, and Votto was walked intentionally. Phillips popped out, and Votto tried to steal; it was a decoy, and during the rundown, pinch runner Tyler Holt broke for home. The Bucs had it sniffed out; Jordy's throw home beat Holt by a mile. But Stew went for the swipe tag, the ball was jarred from his glove for another error, and the Red ploy worked.

Cutch started off the eighth with a soft, broken bat liner to right and went to second on a hit-and-run. Marte singled through the shortstop hole to tie the game, and went to second on the throw home. Gregory was walked, and Cotham was yanked for old buddy Ross Ohlendorf. who finished the frame quietly.

Been a bad day for bats; Duvall dropped a broken bat knock into right to open the ninth against Arquimedes Caminero. Scott Schebler's double to left scored him; Starling missed the relay man, changing Duvall's dash from bang-bang to an easily-beat-the-swipe (Josh's relay was to the 1B side) score. Ohlie gave up a dramatic two out homer to JJ (96 MPH heater, inside half, knee high, bye-bye) to knot the game again, and was lucky as Stew and Cutch lined out to the track, both retired on over-the-head grabs.

On to the 10th. Three up, three down for Ryan Vogelsong. The Bucs had runners on first and second with an out, but Blake Wood (who was at Indy last year) fanned S-Rod and Jordy to keep the extras rollin'. The Pirate outfield hurt V-Song in the 11th. Marte played a single into a triple by missing on a dive, and Polanco misplayed another ball, letting it over his head for the hit (it would have been a sac fly if he did catch it) that brought the lead run home. Wood got three bouncers (one a great play by Eugenio Suarez to take away a Freese hit) and that was all she wrote: Reds win 6-5.

Gregory Polanco - a couple of hits, a couple of misses (photo Nam Yuh/AP)

Sometimes you get beat and sometimes you lose; the Pirates lost today. Clint's use of the Shark and Tony Watson earlier in the series limited him today as he tried to clear everyone's schedule for the Cub series. But it wasn't the pitching; the Pirates fielding was a disaster, particularly Starling and Gregory, who continues to have problems on balls he has to go back on. Anyway, mama said there would be days like this; let's hope it's out of their system for the next series against Chicago.

  • Starling Marte's four assists lead the league for an outfielder. Matt Joyce's six RBI lead all pinch hitters.
  • It took Josh 10 innings, but he kept his 10 game hitting streak alive. Jordy's seven game hit streak died.
  • Cincinnati's bullpen has given up runs in 19 straight outings. They've given up 19 homers in those 19 games.
  • The game snapped a six game Pirates winning and Reds losing streak.
  • The gate was 28,755 despite the iffy weather; we suspect a lot of the marathon crowd visited PNC after the races.

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