Sunday, August 28, 2016

Home Run Or No Count: Bucs Broom Brewers 3-1

First inning, no probs for Chase Anderson who 1-2-3'ed the Bucs. Ivan Nova gave up a two-out double to Hernan Perez, the latest in a cast of Brew Crew nemeses, but no other damage.  The second was equally quiet. Pittsburgh got a bunt single and swiped sack from Starling while a HBP followed by a DP was Milwaukee's output. Pittsburgh went down without a peep in the third. With two gone, Nova hung a curve to Jonathan Villar and he crushed it to make it 1-0 Brew Crew.

Sweet back-to-back starts for Ivan Nova (photo Fred Vuich/AP)

In the fourth, a Cutch single, El Coffee walk and Starling blooper loaded 'em up, and that's just how the Buccos left them. The Brewers went down in order. Anderson fanned the side in the fifth; Ivan gave up another two-out two bagger that left no scars. The Pirates finally hit paydirt in the sixth, JJ smacked his first homer since June, a crush job into the RF second tier. After an out, it was Gregory's turn as he lined a changeup into the RF stands. Jhan Marinez came on to shut the gate, but not until he drilled Freeser in the shoulder blade with a running heater. Nova did what a pro does and tucked the Brewers away without a peep.

Marinez bopped Matt Joyce in the foot and walked a pair, but escaped unscathed in the seventh. Antonio Bastardo used nine pitches to produce two whiffs and an 0-2 fly out. (Ivan was working on a 75 pitch three hitter, but his hammy acted up and Clint kept him in the clubhouse). Carlos Torres took the ball in the eighth and Starling Marte added a bit of insurance by lining a shot over the LCF fence. Felipe Rivero gave up a two-out infield single in an otherwise spotless frame. Rob Scahill was nicked only by an infield bleeder in the ninth. Tony Watson made it interesting just a bit by yielding a two-out single, but finished it up with a K for his 10th save.

JJ's homer got the ball rollin' in Brewtown (photo Bruce Dill/USA Today)

A sweep at Miller Park.  Next thing ya know, they'll be winning a series at Wrigley Field.

  • Pittsburgh had seven hits. Starling Marte had three of them and was the only player on either team to have more than one knock.
  • The Pirates swept a four-game series in Milwaukee for the first time ever today. They hadn't swept a three-game or better series at Miller Park since 2004.
  • Ivan Nova said after the game that he expects to make his next start. His left hammy tightened and he was removed mostly as a precautionary measure.

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