Thursday, June 28, 2012
Pirates Game 75 Recap - Pirates 5, Phillies 4
Sometimes in a game it takes consistent scoring and timely hitting in order to get a win and then other times it takes one big inning and holding on. The Pirates did the latter and earned a split in Philadelphia. It looked really good at the beginning and didn't look so good at the end but they got the outs when they needed to and won 5-4.
For the offense this was all about one inning. The Pirates used a pair of home runs to race out to a five run first inning and it turns out that is all the team needed. Garrett Jones started it off with a single to right field to score Drew Sutton with one out and then Casey McGehee tanked a pitch in the next at bat to left field for a three run home run. That was all well and good but then Pedro Alvarez blasted a line drive home run to right field to round out the scoring. Five runs, four hits and a nice cushion for A.J. Burnett.
The problem for the Pirates was that they only had three hits the rest of the game. Not good but they did enough in the first inning to survive. This was also a pretty significant win because the catalyst for the offense, Andrew McCutchen, didn't reach base so it was a true team effort in that first inning.
Burnett had a really solid outing and just continues to pitch very feel for the Pirates as he went 6.2 innings and struck out seven batters only yielding three runs on six hits. I think that most thought that A.J. would do better in Pittsburgh than his past two years in New York but he has really been a horse for this team and has been paired with James McDonald to be the stoppers of the team. Love it.
Things got interesting later in the game as Jason Grilli gave up a home run to Hunter Pence to lead off the eighth inning and then proceeded to hit the next batter before recording the first out. After an infield single it was first and second with only one out and that is when Grilli buckled down. He got pinch hitter Jim Thome to strike out in a big situation for the second consecutive night and then got the N.L. leading hitter Carlos Ruiz to foul out to McGehee who made a spectacular play at first base. It will be on SportsCenter tonight. It is also one of the video's on MLB.com. Check it out.
Things got more interesting for Joel Hanrahan in the ninth inning as he gave up a leadoff hit to Jimmy Rollins and was sacrificed to second to put a runner in scoring position with one out. The Hammer didn't care as he recorded a strikeout of Shane Victorino and a fly out by Pence. Boom. Raise it.
It wasn't a great game for the Pirates and the Phillies probably feel like they should have came out on top, but they didn't. They got the series sweep so they are going out of Philadelphia just as they came in which isn't ideal but I will take it. Getting two out of three from the Cardinals that would make for a huge week. All in all this series against the Phillies was pretty good considering how it started.