Saturday, August 27, 2016

J-Hay, Cutch, El Coffee & The Pen Boost Bucs To 9-6 Win

J-Hay opened the game with a rap to right off Jimmy Nelson. A swinging bunt moved him up 90' and a swipe got him to third. A two-out walk to Matt Joyce put Bucs at the corners and Starling's double over the 3B bag brought home a run before the fun ended. The Brewers came back with a vengeance against Jameson Taillon. A bloop single and walk with an out got him in a jam, then a changeup that was down but over the middle of the plate was shipped into the stands by Hernan Perez. An out later, a double and single tacked on another tally before JT K'ed Nelson.

Three grounders, three outs for the Pirates in the second. Jamo tossed a clean frame, too. Josh singled and stole a base in the third, but was left at third. Perez led off with his second long fly, this time connecting on a 3-1 center cut fastball. With two gone, an infield single and double almost rang up another point, but the Marte-to-Mercer-to-Fryer tag team got the final out at home.

Jamo found out it isn't all cookies and cream when you live upstairs (photo Joe Robbins/Getty)

With one gone in the fourth, Fraze singled and Jordy walked. Eric Fryer worked a nine pitch free pass, bringing up John Jaso as JT got a early shower. JJ knocked home a run with a rap. J-Hay blooped a two run single, and he and JJ moved up a station when the throw home bounced away. That extra base proved big when Josh Bell's right side grounder tied it up. Cutch legged out an infield roller, and the Bucs had the lead. Craig Counsell finally got Nelson; po' kid tossed 42 pitches this inning before Tyler Cravy was waved on. He walked Joyce but got a long and loud third out from Starling before any more pillaging occurred. Jeff Locke climbed the hill and the first batter, Cravy, collected his first MLB hit on the first pitch - a 409' homer to tie it. An out and single later, Jordy picked a hot shot and flipped it into two to cruise out of the frame.

The Bucs and Brewers both went down in order in the fifth. Blaine Boyer claimed the hill in the sixth and S-Rod, a defensive sub now at third (don't ask), singled. An out later, Bell went the opp way for  two-bagger and Cutch was given four wide ones to load the sacks. Gregory pinch hit (it was Locke's spot) and his double unclogged the bases to make it 9-6. Juan Nicasio toed the rubber for a 1-2-3 frame. Brent Suter took the ball for the seventh and was nicked for an infield knock by S-Rod, who he picked off after review to end the frame. Juan picked up a pair of whiffs to go with a pop for another clean inning.

Gregory should be cheesin' after his clutch blow (photo Pittsburgh Pirates)

Suter was touched for another two out knock that didn't hurt in the eighth. Juan gave up a rap but put up another zero in a big-time effort tonight. Both Tony Watson and Felipe Rivero are on the shelf after working three straight contests, so carrying the lead into the ninth was just what the doc ordered.
Suter struck out the side in an impressive outing for the Brew Crew. Neftali Feliz came in for the save against the 8-9-1 hitters on his third straight night of work. He gave up a one-out knock and two-out walk to bring up Ryan Braun as the game-tying run. Drama seems to be the driving force behind Bucco closers, and it continued to the last out. Jordy made a sweet play on Braun and gunned him out by a heartbeat. Counsell challenged - what the heck, it was bang-bang - and lost *whew*

Who'd a thunk the Bucs would take a series at Miller Park after that pitiful home stand? And they go for the sweep tomorrow, a feat they haven't accomplished since 2004. Give winner Jeff Locke and Juan Nicasio big props for eating five innings, and Jordy for a couple of web-gems. The Bucs are 1-1/2 games behind the Cards for the last wildcard, seeming to have more lives than your average cat so far during this crazy campaign.

The Energizer Bunny was in the middle of everything (photo Getty Images)

  • Today's big news to start: As first reported by @BiertempfelTrib, Gerrit Cole will have his right elbow examined in LA by Dr. Neal ElAttrache and miss his Monday start against the Cubs. He has already had an MRI that revealed that he doesn't have ligament damage, so the doc is looking for something along the lines of a bone spur, etc. We expect that Steven Brault, who is on the 40-man roster and rested enough to go, will get the start.
  • Josh Harrison had three hits, two RBIs, two runs and two stolen sacks. Cutch collected a pair of knocks and a walk, scoring once and driving home a run.
  • Starling Marte's 16 outfield assists ties his single-season career-high, which he set last year.
  • In a bit of near-karmic revenge, Sean Rodriguez nearly was trampled by Milwaukee's mascot sausages as he stepped out of the dugout to take the field in the sixth. Maybe they thought he was Randall Simon's long-lost cousin. 
  • @stephenjnesbitt tweeted that Clint Hurdle stopped chewing gum recently because it hurt a muscle in his neck. He posted that Clint said ‏"I've had the greatest emails. [That] I wasn't chewing my gum responsibly. Then there was a big concern because it wasn't sugarless gum."
  • Tyler Glasnow's rehab start wasn't real promising for a quick return to viable MLB action. He went three IP, giving up no runs on three hits with three walks and three strikeouts. His control wasn't there. Tyler tossed 58 pitches, 31 for strikes, and threw a first strike to just three of 14 batters that he faced.
  • Getting there: Players are eligible for September call up on Thursday, though Indy's season doesn't end until the fifth, which should delay the arrival of the cavalry.
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