Today was a frustrating game. The Pirates got a good, not great, game from A.J. Burnett but the offense wasn't able to get even close to anything done against Ryan Vogelsong who was throwing around 87 all day. The Pirates offense got three hits and it was really tough to watch. If you needed a reason to drink today then you could have just watched about every at bat. I think you get the point.
Burnett went 7.1 innings and struck out six. He gave up eight hits and walked three and the real gut punch came when he was sent back out for the eighth inning. Burnett only gave up one run through seven and was well over 100 pitches but Clint Hurdle sent him back out. He recorded one out in the inning and was allowed to let face Pablo Sandoval with two runners on and the first pitch Sandoval got went to the right-center gap for a triple and scored two runs.
I get why Burnett started the inning but with a left in Sandoval up and Tony Watson already warm in the pen I am not really sure why Burnett was allowed to face him. Obviously this is going to be a hindsight moment but with an off day tomorrow I am not sure why Burnett was allowed to throw a season high amount of pitches. I am not saying that Hurdle's move lost the game for the Pirates, because the offense was a much bigger problem (and the reason for the loss), but that doesn't mean that we should just gloss over the move. That's all I am saying.
A lot of people are really blowing up over the Pirates offense. I get why they are after the really bad day today but the truth of the matter is the the offense has been good since the All-Star break. Like, really good. All-told the offense is hitting .251/.324/.403 and when you look at just the hitters (with the brutally bad hitting Pirates pitchers taken out) then you get a .263/.339/.426 line. Actually when you look at every team in baseball since the All-Star break and account for just the hitters (no pitchers for anyone) then the Pirates rank in the top five in OBP, SLG, wRC+, and wOBA. Things can always be better but lets pump the brakes a little.
The Pirates really had a downer with the final two games of the series with their one and two on the hill but they came out to the West coast and went 4-3. They won a road trip. Would I have liked to see a few more wins? Sure, who wouldn't. The fact of the matter is that the Pirates won more games than they lost and are better than when they came here, a part of the country where they have not played well in the recent past. Excuse me if I am alright with that.