Bucco nemesis Zack Cozart, just returned to lineup after nursing a wrist injury, doubled. Another two-bagger brought him home. Garrett laid down a bunt; Fran went to Freeser to cut down the lead man but David couldn't handle the toss. Then Billy Hamilton singled, Jose Peraza doubled, and it was 4-0 before the Bucs could get back to the dugout. Ivan was hit pretty hard (Hamilton's single was grounder, the rest were barreled up) and the Pirates defense added a dash of petrol to the blaze. The Pirates had no response in their half other than a two-out knock by Harrison.
|At leats Freeser remembers what a bat's for (photo Pittsburgh Pirates)|
Ivan bounced back with a clean sixth. Goose hit for Nova, ending his night (four runs, three earned, eight hits, one K) and starting a 1-2-3 frame against Garrett.
Antonio Bastardo, who started the day by rescuing a bird that he found injured during warm-ups, took the hill in the seventh. After two outs, an infield single and pair of free passes filled the sack with Reds. They all scampered home on Eugenio Suarez's double; guess Good Samaritan karma doesn't carry over to the hill. He was yanked for Felipe Rivero, who gave up another double before dousing the fire. Cutch opened with a leg hit and then trotted home ahead of Freeser, who lifted one the opposite way for his second dinger of the year. With two outs, he plunked J-Hay and Blake Wood finished up the frame.
Daniel Hudson worked the eighth and gave up a run on three singles, using 31 pitches to get three outs. Robert Stephenson got the call for the Reds and put up another another zippo. Tony Watson tossed a quiet ninth with a walk erased by a DP. The Bucs put a couple of guys on and left them there to call it a night.
|At least Tony tossed a calm ninth (photo Dave Arrigo/Pirates)|
The Bucs were thumped this series, but still in all, 3-5 isn't a death notice. What remains to be seen is if the Pirates ran into a hot team while they were cold or if the team is really offensively challenged with a nickle-and-dime attack. We'll also see what tweaks they have for the bullpen, which was shaky (here's lookin' at you, AB) and how a young staff settles in during the season. They have a trying schedule ahead of them, starting with Boston tomorrow afternoon, but maybe a road trip is what the doctor ordered.
- Cutch and Freeser each had a pair of hits tonight while J-Hay had a knock, a walk and a plunk.
- Jordy is not only having a frustrating first two weeks at the dish, but he couldn't buy a break tonight - he smoked three at 'em balls before finally finding grass by drilling an eighth-inning double.
- Antonio Bastardo has made four outings and been scored upon in all of them, giving up nine runs on eight hits (three HR) and five walks in four IP. Bet the FO would like a redo on Tyler Webb's return.
- In stark contrast, Amir Garrett started his MLB career with 12 scoreless frames before Freeser's HR broke the spell.
- Like yesterday, the Reds proved clutch - five of their nine runs crossed after two outs and a 3-2 count on the hitter.
- Not much action on the base paths tonight, but this will get your attention - against the Reds, the Pirates went 0-for-24 w/RISP and stranded 25 runners.
- A slim gate again - 12,327 spun the turnstiles tonight.