In 2014 the Pirates haven't been overly good against left handed pitching. That is somewhat weird because in 2013 anytime a southpaw was on the bump the Pirates beat them down pretty well but for some reason that hasn't carried over to this year. Well, until last night.
They were facing Madison Bumgarner last night and to be honest I didn't have a good feeling about that at all. That was until after the first inning when the Pirates got all over Bumgarner for four runs on three hits and two walks and had him throw 42 pitches. Bumgarner didn't have his best stuff and that was pretty obvious but the Pirates put together some really outstanding plate appearances and when they got a pitch to hit they laced it. Two of the three outs in the inning were sacrifice flies and Brent Morel grounded out to end the inning as the eighth batter. Just great stuff.
The real story thought might have been Vance Worley. He and Edison Volquez are the two guys that are probably fighting for one spot once Gerrit Cole comes back and while Volquez struggled in his last start Worley nearly pulled off a Maddux (complete game shutout in fewer than 100 pitches). Worley threw exactly 100 pitches and faced two batters over the minimum thanks in part to a pair of double plays and a caught stealing. 71 of his pitches went for strikes and he threw less than 15 pitches in every inning excluding the seventh (17 pitches) and threw 10 or less in each of the third through sixth innings. He was crazy efficient.
The Pirates offense really didn't do a whole lot after the first inning. Josh Harrison tacked on the fifth run in the second inning with a home run but the Pirates had only three other hits after that. I guess it really doesn't matter since Worley was so good and they were able to knock out Bumgarner after only four innings but putting up eight or nine runs would have been nice.