Zack Greinke Shines In Debut, Pirates Silenced By Dodgers
By Tom Smith
The Pittsburgh Pirates offense is missing
The Zack Greinke Show made its’ L.A. debut and it was received with rave reviews as the Dodgers topped the Pirates 3-0. Grienke fired two-hit ball into the seventh inning.
The Pirates skipper Clint Hurdle said he was “encouraged by the pitching and encouraged by the defense. We are 1-3, but we are in games.”
Once again, the offense was missing for the Buccos.
Jonathan Sanchez made his 18th career start against L.A. The southpaw relied on his fastball early as he retired the first five Dodgers batters. The Dodgers scored off Sanchez on an Andre Ethier homer, his first of the season, and RBI doubles from Matt Kemp (his first hit of the season which he celebrated on the bag) and Adrian Gonzalez (his first RBI of the year.)
Sanchez survived some traffic on the base paths in the fifth and hung a few splits in the sixth inning. Operation Dark Horse fired 88 pitches and gave up six hits. In all, it was a surprising outing with Sanchez showing his competitive spirit on several occassions–even with his at-bats during which he saw a lot of curveballs and a changeup.
Greinke struck out six and did not walk a batter in 6 1-3 innings. He gave up a two-out single (error?) to Garrett Jones in the second and Andrew McCutchen got a knock in the seventh inning.
The Pirates could have easily been one-hit because the Jones hit was a hard hit, one-hopper to short right field into a shift. The ball ate up second baseman Mark Ellis.
It must have pissed off Greinke, because he set down 14 Buccos in a row. (Dodgers shortstop Justin Sellers made a sweet play on a GFJ well hit groundball in the fifth) One could say Andrew McCutchen had the only actual hit of the game when he ripped a single to center field in the seventh inning.
Sanchez matched Greinke early, but was eventually chased from the game in the sixth after giving up a Mark Ellis leadoff walk. Kemp and Gonzo followed with their back-to-back doubles and Sanchez was relieved by Jeanmar Gomez. The right-hander held the Dodgers at bay the rest of the way.
Ahh….the memories, we miss you Pirates offense!