Morton seemed to really have it all tonight. He went seven innings and threw only 86 pitches (59 strikes) and struck out five while not walking a single batter. If there was ever a night to coin the term Ground Chuck then it was tonight as he recorded 21 outs that included 14 groundouts, one fly out, five strikeouts, and one caught stealing. Not too shabby Chuck, not too shabby at all. The nice thing about all of this is that Morton doesn't have to be great, although it is always nice when he is, but he's a back end of the rotation guy and he can give you any kind of start like he does tonight then that is pretty huge.
Morton got into some trouble in the fourth inning where the Marlins were able to pick up a pair of runs but were really unable to get more with runners on the corners and nobody out with already a run in. One of those ground balls turned a double play that let a run score and then a strikeout. Outside of that the Marlins had nothing going. After that fourth inning Morton didn't allow another base runner.
The offense really wasn't that great as they struck out eight times in only five innings to Marlins starter Tom Koehler
but they did just enough in the fourth and fifth inning to get one more run than the Marlins and win the series.
Andrew McCutchen decided to be Andrew McCutchen and went deep to the opposite field in the fourth inning to cut the lead in half then Morton answered in the fifth inning with an RBI hit followed by Jordy Mercer scoring on a wild pitch. Just a wild inning. Also, Morton is going to the Hall of Fame:
Chuck gets a hit here and he's a HOFer— Cory (@ThreeRiversBlog) August 8, 2013
I guess that is finally settled. Won't have to worry about the argument when it comes.
Pedro Alvarez had a really nice day in the field and also added on another run for the Pirates in the eighth inning with a sacrifice fly.
McCutchen was the only Pirate with more than one hit on the night as he now has five multi-hit games in a row. I mean, I guess he is an alright baseball player.
The Pirates got a really good outing from Morton and got some timely scoring thanks to some base running from Josh Harrison and some general awful play from the Marlins. The Marlins aren't as bad as they seem on paper but they are a team that the Pirates should beat on a consistent basis. Tonight was important since Jose Fernandez is going to be the Miami starter tomorrow and he has been nothing short of outstanding this season. I wouldn't be shocked if he racked up around 12-15 strikeouts tomorrow, easily.
Whatever. Another win. Wins are fun.