We caught today’s 4:05 game from the all you can eat seats, along with about 20,000 other Bucco fans. Aside from one good inning, the Pirates really couldn’t get anything going offensively, and lost to the Diamondbacks 6-3. The series split is pretty disappointing, but hopefully they can make up some ground with the Padres coming into town.
Wandy Rodriguez, making his home debut, got roughed up a bit. He gave up a two-run homer to Jason Kubel in the first, and another two-run shot to Wil Nieves in the sixth. He turned in a six-inning start, giving up four runs on seven hits and two walks – by no means a bad start, but he certainly wasn’t fooling any batters. Jordy Mercer, getting his second consecutive start, made a few nice plays at SS to help out Wandy, including a slick spin-o-rama on a ball up the middle.
The Bucs got a big inning in the third off of lefty Joe Saunders. Three straight singles to start the inning by Gaby Sanchez, Neil Walker, and The Fort got them on the board. A groundout moved the runners up to second and third, and Jordy Mercer tied the game with a sac-fly. Wandy came up to the plate first pitch swinging, and laced a groundball up the middle. It deflected to the first baseman, who fielded it and flipped to Saunders. It looked like he tripped on the base as he caught the ball, but the umpire called him safe. It was hard to tell from our angle, but it definitely looked like he was out. What else would he have tripped on? Either way, the Pirates caught a break, and Starling Marte took advantage with an RBI-single to take the lead.
That would be it for the Bucs offensively, but the D-backs weren’t done. Kubel hit his second two-run bomb in the seventh off of Jared Hughes. That made it 6-3, and it was pretty much over by then. Jeff Locke did a nice job as he pitched 2.1 innings of no-hit baseball. Cutch picked up a base hit, and Starling hit a two-out triple in the seventh. It was such an amazing play – taking it to the opposite field and speeding around the bases. There wasn’t even a play at third. This guy has been fun to watch.
J.J. Putz closed out the game with ease, earning his 21st save.
Pirates (63-48) – Diamondbacks (57-55)
Win: Saunders (6-8)
Loss: Rodriguez (7-11)
Save: Putz (21)