Yikes, that was bad. As good as the Pirates offense was in the first two games of the series it was pretty much that bad tonight. Matt Cain has been pretty bad so far this season but he looked like he did last season when he only allowed a James McDonald single to spoil a perfect game bid against the Pirates. The Pirates tonight got the first of three hits in like the fifth inning and never really challenged after that. Andrew McCutchen doubled and Pedro Alvarez walked twice but that was about it.
Charlie Morton was sort of the story of the night. After having Tommy John surgery last year he came back pretty strong. While his final line isn't going to blow you away he still was pretty good on the night for his first game back. He went five innings, struck out five, surrendered seven hits, four runs (two earned), and got six of his nine batted outs in the form of groundouts. I think what was most interesting is that Morton had his velocity around 93-94 and got it up as high as 96-97 during the night. You could definitely tell that he was amped up for the start but as Dave Manel of Bucs Dugout wrote about Morton and Cole's starts weren't all that different when you actually sit down and look at it. Interesting read from Dave.
Outside of Morton things were just really bad. To be honest these games are going to happen. This one just got away from the Pirates and in the sixth inning when the Pirates called on Mike Zagurski to pitch that was really the white flag. He gave up five runs on six hits, in one inning. Yikes. No reason he still needs to be on the roster.
All-in-all, like I said, these games happen. What is nice is that these games for the Pirates are coming fewer and farther between. They still took the series from the Giants which is really what we should be focusing on. As long as the Pirates are winning series they are going to be in a good shape going into the break and going further into the second half of the season.
The Pirates have an interesting setup as we all found out that A.J. Burnett was going on the DL with a problem with his calf and they already have a slew of pitchers on the DL including Wandy Rodriguez so we are going to need to see the depth that they have. They have moved up Jeff Locke to pitch on Friday night with Gerrit Cole going on Sunday. That leaves an open spot on Saturday for someone to pitch. No idea who that may be.