The Pittsburgh Pirates pitching staff has been able to shut down quite a few teams over the first eighteen games. The team now heads to Atlanta for a weekend series with the Braves, who are scoring a pile of runs. It will be a good test for the 8-10 Buccos.
What a game James McDonald pitched yesterday – just unreal! In the end, it’s just another case of the Bucs snatching a loss from the jaws of victory, but we think McDonald can gain a great deal in the future after watching his dominance for a few innings, and then watching him battle the rest of the way.
It was an outing that most Buccos fans hope to see happening more regularly for the right hander. If you listen to the interview on the right side of our homepage, you will hear that A.J. Burnett is helping McDonald, which is also great to hear.
McDonald ended up with a no-decision, but it’s a performance that is on tape forever. It’s something that he can use as a template as the season moves along.
The right hander was nearly flawless before Troy Tulowitzki’s infield single with one aboard in the seventh. McDonald allowed just one run, striking out eight and walking three.
The Pirates finished the homestand with a 3-3 record, and the Bucs are now 8-10 overall which is disappointing when considering that the Pirates’ arms have some nice ERA numbers (if you’re into that type of thing). The Bucs are second in the National League at 2.72.
Remember when Charlie Morton sucked?
Seems like a long time ago.
Morton cruised through the second game allowing only a late Colorado bomb. The Pirates offense used the sun to its’ advantage and left PNC Park with a split after the 5-1 win. Nate McLouth’s RBI double sparked the Bucs as Carlos Gonzalez really struggled to see the baseball off several of the Pirates bats.
The Bucs jumped on the opportunity. CarGo lost a couple routine fly balls in the gorgeous late-day, Pittsburgh sun. Maybe its’ an omen that the offense will break out against the Braves and Cardinals on the upcoming road trip…
With the team up 4-0, Pedro Alvarez slugged his second bomb of the day on another off-speed pitch. The opposition is throwing more junk to Pedro than they are fastballs this season, and Alvarez is making them pay.
Let’s review the Pedro Alvarez bombs from yesterday:
Please, we beg of you…. Jim Callis, Baseball America/JJ Cooper’s top secret scout, whoever – please keep writing negative articles on Pedro Alvarez.
Despite the offensive outburst, the Bucs set another major league sports record with its 18th straight game starting the season in which neither team scored more than five runs, surpassing the standard set by the 1943 Detroit Tigers.