Monday, September 11, 2017

Brault & Buc Bombs Drop Brew Crew 7-0

Well, good enough start against young Mr. Brandon Woodruff - a Fraze single and a Cutch homer (his first since August 8th) in the first frame gave Steven Brault an early two-run pad. Fraze tried to generate some more action in the third with a two-out walk, steal, and quick trip to third on a pickoff gone astray, but Andrew couldn't cash him in this time. For Steven, it's been nine up, nine down. Each side left a duck on the pond in the fourth. In the fifth, the Bucs connected with a long ball again when there was a Marte Partay after a Brault two-bagger. The Brew Crew collected their first rap to open the fifth but Jesus Aguilar never got beyond first. The Pirates had first-and-third, no outs in the sixth. That chased Woodruff and brought in Jared Hughes; he got a tapper and ran down J-Bell, who was off on contact and running like, well, J-Bell. A grounder and intentional walk set up Steven, who bounced a pretty good slider up the middle to plate a pair. At the end of six, Steven Brault has two hits and the Brewers one; the Bucs six runs and the Brew Crew none.

That looked like the IL's MVP Pitcher tonight (photo Dave Arrigo/Pirates)

Oliver Drake toed the slab in the seventh for Milwaukee and put up a zero. AJ Schugel took the ball; we thought maybe one more frame for Steven was in order, but after 92 pitches and a September bullpen cast of thousands, we can't pick too many nits with the hook. Brault went six innings giving up a hit and walk with six K. Schugs did his thing. Jacob Barnes worked the eighth and the Pirates piled on a little more when Jordy lost another baseball. Huddy climbed the hill. He gave up a single, got a DP, then issued a walk, bringing Dan Runzler in to nail down the frame in his first showtime outing since 2012 as a SF Giant. Junior Guerra got the ninth inning call and navigated successfully. Clint called Felipe Rivero, which seemed a bit like overkill though he did need the work - he's been off since the 5th. He gave up a knock but otherwise kept to the script.

Hit three homers and don't allow any opponents past first base...hmmm, sounds like a plan to us. Good win and good to see Steven Brault get his first MLB victory so impressively; it's also good to see September stories like Dan Runzler play out.

  • Gregory and Steven each had two raps; four Pirates had a knock and a walk tonight.
  • Cutch has 199 Bucco home runs, behind only Willie Stargell (475), Ralph Kiner (301) and Roberto Clemente (240) in franchise history. BTW, Andrew's 20 career HRs at Miller are the most swatted there by any opponent.
  • Steven Brault isn't a blind pig who found an acorn; judging by his small pro sample, he can hit - he was 13-of-31 (.419) in the minors and is 5-of-17 (.294) in the bigs.
  • Jordy's 14 homers are the most by a Pirates shortstop since Jay Bell hit 16 in 1991, which tells you a lot about Pirates shortstops.
  • Joaquin Benoit left the team, with club permission, to attend to a family matter in the Dominican. No guesstimate on how long he'll be gone. The Pirates say because of anticipated hurricane-associated delays, they'll keep in contact with him and play it by ear.
Is Chad next to skip a turn? (photo Pittsburgh Pirates)
  • The Pirates rotation is still seat-of-the-pants now that all hands are on deck. Clint says they're thinking of giving Chad Kuhl the next break even though he's pretty much carrying the same workload he's had for the past three seasons. Regular starters Ivan, Jamo (tonight) and Trevo (Wednesday) have all been given/scheduled a night off; Chad and Gerrit are the only two who haven't lost a start yet.
  • Who knew? Rob Biertempfel of the Trib has a piece on Jack Leathersich, the reliever recently picked up from the Cubs and now with the big team, and it ends up that his mom's family is from Fox Chapel.
  • Hurricane Irma did minor damage to Pirate City with wind-blown debris and flooded fields, but nothing major. Looks like the complex will get by with just a short visit to the DL.
  • Ryan Vogelsong will officially retire as a  SF Giant Sunday at AT&T Park.

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