Our beloved Buccos returned home to PNC Park tonight, greeted by 36,000+ fans who watched them take game one against the Royals. Erik Bedard bounced back from his poor start in Milwaukee, and came out firing. He struck out the first two batters he faced pretty convincingly, and got some early run support. Garrett Jones doubled off the right-center field wall to drive in the first run of the game.
Rod Barajas led off the second with a single, and hoofed it to second after RF Eric Hosmer (who was only playing in the outfield because of the no DH rule) misplayed the ball. Clint Barmes lined a single into the gap, and Barajas didn’t break right away. Jeff Francoeur, who has one of the best throwing arms in the game, fielded it and fired home. The throw beat Rod, but he was able to avoid the tag, somehow dancing around the catcher to touch the plate safely.
The crowd roared with a combination of laughter and cheers as Barmes took second on the throw to put himself in scoring position. Neil Walker singled him in a few batters later, and the Bucs had a 3-0 lead. Kansas City finally got to Bedard in the third after he walked his third batter in as many innings. Yuniesky Betancourt doubled off the CF wall, scoring Alex Gordon. Mike Moustakas drove him in with a single, and the Royals cut the lead to 3-2.
With one down in the bottom frame, Pedro Alvarez smoked a double to dead center, and Jose Tabata singled to put runners on the corners. Tabata got caught between first and second trying to steal, but Pedro was able to score from third due to the Royals’ poor execution on the rundown. That was it for the offense on the night. Bedard finished with 7 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 5 K, and 3 BB. Luke Hochevar went 6 innings, giving up 9 hits and 4 runs. Jason Grilli pitched the eighth, and Joel Hanrahan shut the door in the ninth to get the save.
Unfortunately, the Reds also won tonight (on a walk-off squeeze play), so the Pirates didn’t move up in the standings. They’re still 2 games out of first, but Justin Verlander is pitching against the Reds tomorrow. Bucs could move up a game with a win.
See you tomorrow night at PNC Park.
This is the most wins the #Pirates have had through 57 games since 1992.—
Alex (@Sangys_BBQ) June 09, 2012
Pirates (30-27) – Royals (24-33)
Win: Bedard (4-6)
Loss: Hochevar (3-7)
Save: Hanrahan (16)