Saturday, July 22, 2017

Rox Cool Off Bucs 7-3

A J-Hay walk and Cutch double got the Bucs up quickly on German Marquez while Chad Kuhl pitched a clean frame. The second was quiet but for a two-out walk by Kuhl. The Buccos had a hard luck third; Starling singled, but was doubled off first when J-Hay's opposite field liner was pulled in by the 1B'man. The Rox had an inning, turning two doubles and two smoked singles into a three spot. One of the knocks was a two-out rap by Marquez, who scored a batter later; Pirates pitchers aren't doing a very good lately against oppo hurlers at the dish. A J-Bell blast in the fourth was quickly answered by Colorado by a double-wild pitch-single trifecta. Pittsburgh didn't make a peep in the fifth; the Rox almost added on, but a two-out double resulted in an out at the plate, Cutch-to-Harrison-to-Cervy on a text-book relay play. Cutch was plunked in the shoulder in the sixth with no damage, to him (although he did show some temper) or the scoreboard.

Freeser reached twice (photo Pittsburgh Pirates)

Chad took offense at the HBP and whistled a pitch over CarGo's noggin, leading to a mound charge, a bench-emptying milling of players and warnings to both clubs. Gonzalez exacted his revenge with a knock; Cutch paid back Chad by robbing Marquez (holy cow, these free-swinging pitchers!) with a leaping two-out grab at the wall. The seventh went quietly for Pittsburgh. AJ Schugel took the bump and gave up a lead-off triple. He almost got away with it, but Ian Desmond rolled a ball through the right side with two outs to get the run home. Jake McGee took the ball in the eighth. A walk and single were promising; a J-Hay GIDP wasn't. Cutch walked, bringing in Greg Holland. J-Bell got good wood on the ball, but Charlie Blackmon made a running grab in RC to shut the door. Stephen Brault answered the phone. Maybe he shouldn't have; a walk, double and single dented him for a pair of Rox runs.

Marte had a partay (photo Pittsburgh Pirates)

The Pirates made some ninth inning noise after two walks and a knock loaded 'em up with one out. With two away, Marte's infield single plated a run and kept the Bucs on life support. J-Hay gave the first pitch a ride, but it went foul and Holland tucked him away. Well, a split at Coors when you're starting the back end of your rotation isn't a bad outcome; taking the series is the goal and we'll see how that works out tomorrow afternoon with Ivan Nova on the bump.


  • Pittsburgh had six hits; Starling had three of them. Cutch and Freeser contributed a knock and walk.
  • The Bucs were due; the loss snapped a six-game winning run. The big thing is that they've won four straight series, and taking a fifth tomorrow would make the opening set on the road trip a smashing success.

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