Thursday, June 24, 2010

Different Ways to Lose: Rangers 6, Pirates 5

The Pirates threw up a four spot in the first inning but couldn’t get the win. They put up 14 hits, not good enough. Steven Jackson was called up today and took the loss. Walks a batter in the ninth and Vlad takes a 1-2 pitch and puts it onto the grass in left field and that was all she wrote. Not too much you can say. It was a pretty good game all around for the Pirates, they just couldn’t get it done. The story of the season for the Pirates. Here are some notes I came up with, for what it’s worth:

- Jeff Karstens has been the ace staff pretty much all year. I don’t know what it is about Karstens, but in every start he gives the Pirates a chance to win. He doesn’t have anything special, doesn’t throw hard, he just throws strikes. That is what it should be about for this staff is throwing strikes. Sure flashy strikeout numbers are nice, but getting outs is what I am worried about and Karstens really gets that. He might only give you five or six innings but they are strong innings and he only gave up three runs in 5.1 innings pitched and I really think that is ok.
- Lastings Milledge is unreal bad in the outfield. If you didn’t watch the game then you missed a fly ball by Josh Hamilton that Milledge didn’t come within 10 feet of catching. No idea what he was doing, but whatever.
- On the terms of terrible, I have no idea why Ryan Church plays. I guess it is understandable that he is in the lineup for interleague play, but put him in right field and let Lastings DH. One step further than that, why the hell is Ryan Church batting fifth? Dude is hitting maybe .170 this year and he is your fifth hitter. Put him eighth. Enough of this.
- GFJ is on fire. He is quickly approaching hitting .300 and has already driven in 46 runs on the season. Very impressive after a mini slump he has to start the season. If he can get rolling this lineup is going to be pretty interesting up top.
- Pedro Alvarez had another hit tonight, in the four run first inning. He took the first pitch he saw and took it the other way down the left field line for a two RBI double. He also came up with a strikeout and a groundout to second. He shows flashes of good at bats but largely he is having some bad swings and also has had a pretty long swing this season. Hopefully he can put a few good at bats together and it will just click. Still really early so there is time.
- Jose Tabata has been looking really good this series. He doesn’t have the hits to show for it but he has been hitting missiles all over the place. What has been bad is that all those line drive hits have been right at players. That is ok. I like what I am seeing from Tabata. He also stole a base and bunted for a base hit tonight. Gotta love that he is using his speed to make things happen.
- Evan Meek gave up a few runs tonight. Raised his ERA over one. Kinda hard to imagine him keeping his ERA under one for an entire year. He doesn’t give up many hits or many runs so I am not really worried about it.

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