Pittsburgh Pirates fall to Cardinals in opener 4-1
The Pittsburgh Pirates began their much anticipated four game set against the Cardinals not with a bang, but with a whimper, losing 4-1 on a rainy night at PNC Park.
Carlos Martinez held the Pirates in check for 7.1 innings, scattering four hits and striking out eight bucs against only two walks. He showed no signs of slowing down, hitting 100mph on a pitch in the seventh inning. Opposing him was Jeff Locke, who took the loss despite looking locked-in for the early part of his start. A rare Jordy Mercer miscue on a somewhat-routine double play ball in the fifth inning opened the door for a Matt Carpenter two-run single. Yadier Molina followed shortly thereafter with a two-run single of his own. That would be all the Cardinals would need on a sloppy, miserable night at PNC. Andrew McCutchen hit a massive 443 ft home run to centerfield to give the Pirates momentary hope for a rally in the bottom of the ninth.
Wasting no time, manager Mike Matheny immediately brought in all-star closer Trevor Rosenthal to squash any hopes for Pirates magic. ROosenthal struck out two of the three batters he faced.
Due to the highly-anticipated nature of this series, Tyler Waite – Co-Editor of Rumbunter – and I are going to put out mini-podcast episodes with our rapid reaction after each game in the Pirates/Cardinals series. Here now is our rapid reaction to the game:
What Stood Out
Baserunning continues to be a massive shortcoming for the Pittsburgh Pirates. After leading off the game with a scorching double and making his way to third, Gregory Polanco did not break towards home quick enough on a grounder to second. As a result of his hesitation, he was thrown out at home.
The Pirates were 1-8 with runners in scoring position and left five on base.
The Pirates will look to rebound against Lance Lynn tomorrow night, 7:05 at PNC Park. Opposing him will be potential all-star game starter Gerrit Cole. For a complete look at all pitching matchups in this series, please click the link below to refer to our series preview.
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