The Pittsburgh Pirates got the win we were looking for at Fort Myers against the Red Sox. The Bucs brought their starters and had a lineup that could look awful familiar come April. The Red Sox left most of their regulars out of the lineup. So, it should have been a rout for the Bucs and finally…it was.
More importantly, it was the results from some of the key players we have liked in camp that made us smile a bit as we listened on the ride home from D.C.
Starling Marte walked. Starling Marte walked. Starling Marte walked. Starling Marte walked. Starling Marte walked. The Buccos left fielder also had a towering triple and started the scoring in the first inning. Starling Marte walked. Damn, that was a fun part of the game.
Phil Irwin kept rolling. He gave up a walk, but also got a strikeout in his one-and-a-third innings pitched.
Jared Hughes has been untouchable, even if it is against some not quite ready for big leaguers.
Andrew McCutchen drove in two runs which we were dying to see. Of course, Jose Tabata kept doing what he’s been doing all spring with a sixth inning, pinch-hit double off the center field fence driving in a run.
And yeh, Michael McKenry was two-for-two and had a walk as well. Jared Goedert had another double.
The plate awareness by the Bucs finally arrived, which is a must-have in 2013.
However, Jonathan Sanchez kept doing what he’s been doing most of the spring and that’s sucking. The southpaw gave up two hits, and walked two. Sanchez only recorded two outs putting the odds higher and higher that he makes the roster before the month ends. Right hander Brooks Brown gave up three hits in his mop up duty.
Josh Harrison didn’t get any hits in two at-bats and continues to fade in what should be a very important spring for the Bucs utility player. Brandon Inge got a knock. Travis Snider struck out twice making the battle for right field a bit more interesting for yet another day.
The big story for us was Jeff Locke. It was obvious, he was working on jumping back into the drivers seat in the Pittsburgh Pirates fifth starter power rankings, the southpaw made his third Grapefruit League start. Locke gave up one run–a welcome sight after the Red Sox knocked him around last time out. He worked out of a jam and spread three hits over four innings of work, although the Sox did barrel up some pitches when Locke failed to get ahead in the count.
The swing-and-miss was a bit more evident as #LockeDown chalked up three strikeouts, but he also walked two batters–including a near miss of Brock Holt’s batting helmet in the third. The damage off Locke was done by an RBI double of the bat of Jonny Gomes in the third inning.