Busy first for J-Grove; he hit a batter, gave up a single, fanned a pair, issued a walk and then left the sacks packed with another K. Jeremy Hellickson cruised through a clean frame. The Nats stranded a leadoff double in the second while the Bucs managed a two-out walk. It was a quiet third for DC. Corey D singled with two gone and Starling followed with another, but Gregory was caught looking. Musgrove gave up a knock in a two-K fourth. It was a seven-pitch frame for Hellickson. With two gone in the fifth and two strikes, Juan Soto legged out a ball and it cost when Anthony Rendon ripped the next pitch, a cutter up in the zone and mid-plate, into the seats. J-Grove finished up the frame and his night, yielding two runs on five hits with a walk and nine K after 96 pitches. The Bucs made one of their three outs loud when Jordan Luplow drilled one to The Notch, the only part of PNC that would hold his ball.
|One mistake cost J-Grove tonight (photo Pittsburgh Pirates)|
Steven Brault got the sixth and it went badly; after an opening strikeout, he gave up three knocks, three walks (two w/the bases loaded), and three runs before Tyler Glasnow got the call. Ty did his job, getting a DP, but it's now a 5-0 hole. The Bucs got a walk and infield single (it took a challenge to get the safe call) against Matt Grace, who was yanked with two gone for Brandon Kintzler. He got a first-pitch grounder to second on a sinker right down the middle from Red Beard. Matt Adams singled in the seventh on a ball deflected by Ty; he would end the inning try to score on Daniel Murphy's double only to be cut down Gregory-to-Mad Max-to-Eli. The Bucs got on the board softly - a J-Bell infield rap, wild pitch, error and grounder finally got someone home. Michael Feliz was back in the saddle for the eighth and put up a zippo, leaving Nats on the corners after two-out singles thanks to a sliding catch by Starling.
Ryan Madson toed the slab and quietly retired the side. Feliz spun a calm ninth. Kelvin Herrera took the hill and Eli greeted him with a knock. With two outs, a Mad Max walk and AM infield knock loaded them up with Amore as the tying run at the dish. But life followed art and the Mighty Cervy struck out (on three pitches).
|Michael Feliz came back with a couple of zeros (photo Pittsburgh Pirates)|
Pretty poor at the plate - seven hits, all singles - and one mistake pitch by J-Grove. And it looks like Steven Brault might be on the Jeff Locke track, too, with not enough trust in his stuff to go after guys. 40 walks in 62-1/3 IP isn't big league performance. Huntington won't be hampered by too many untouchables as the deadline approaches.
- No Pirate had more than a hit; Eli & Corey D had a knock and a walk.
- J-Grove's nine whiffs were a career high.
- There were 17,103 rooters in the stands tonight.
- The Dodgers are reported to have "some" interest in J-Hay by MLBTR, but he seems pretty far down on their wish list.
- The Nats put closer Sean Doolittle on the DL with a toe inflammation.
- RHP Jhan Martinez has made it back to the show. The Orioles recalled him after a good showing in AAA.