Pittsburgh Pirates Win Penultimate Game of the 2017 Season
The Pittsburgh Pirates are now 74-87 this season
The Major League Baseball season is a marathon and that marathon is about to come to an end. While the 2017 season did not go as wished for the Pittsburgh Pirates, they are finishing the season strong. After Saturday night’s 4-1 victory over the Washington Nationals the Pirates are now 5-3 in their past eight games.
Saturday night was the final start of the season for young Pirates’ righty Jameson Taillon. A great start from Taillon helped power the Pirates to victory. With the win, the Pirates are now 74-87 on the season.
As for the Nationals, their ace and defending Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer started on Saturday night. However, Scherzer lasted just 3 1/3 innings before exiting the game with an injury. With the postseason looming, this could be a major problem for the Nationals.
In the bottom of the second inning, the Nationals would draw first blood. With Daniel Murphy on first base and Ryan Zimmerman at the plate Jameson Taillon threw a beautiful breaking ball to Zimmerman that he swung at and missed.
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However, Pirate catcher Elias Diaz failed to corral the pitch allowing Murphy to advance to second base. Zimmerman then hit a ground ball to center field that Starling Marte fielded and fired toward the plate. Murphy was barely able to beat Marte’s throw, was safe at the plate on a bang-bang play, and the Nationals led 1-0.
After Scherzer exited the game, A.J. Cole entered for the Nationals and gave Dusty Baker and the Nats 3 2/3 innings of scoreless work. Cole did not allow a hit, walked two batters, and struck out two.
In seven innings of work on Saturday night Jameson Taillon was dealing. He allowed just four hits, the lone walk he issued was intentional, and he struck out five. Taillon will finish his first full Major League season with a 3.47 FIP and a fWAR of 3.0.
Enny Romer replaced A.J. Cole for the Nationals in the top of the eighth inning. Romero issued a walk to Max Moroff but retired the other three batters he faced to keep the score 1-0 Nationals.
After a 1-2-3 bottom of the eighth inning from George Kontos, the Nats handed the ball to Brandon Kintzler in the top of the ninth inning.
To start the top of the ninth inning Starling Marte reached on an infield hit. Then with one out Jordan Luplow singled to put two men on with one out. Then with two outs, Sean Rodriguez singled home Marte to tie the game.
Following the Rodriguez single, Kintzler issued a walk to Elias Diaz to load the bases. Max Moroff then hit a bases clearing triple, giving the Pirates a 4-1 lead. Moroff had a big game on Saturday night going 2-for-2 with a triple, two walks, and three runs batted in.
After the Moroff triple Kintzler was removed from the game for left-handed pitcher Sammy Solis. He got Chris Bostick to fly out to left field to end the inning.
In the top of the ninth inning it was Felipe Rivero time. The ex-National punished his former teammates on Saturday night by retiring the Nats in order to seal the 4-1 Pirates victory on Saturday night.
At 3:00 PM tomorrow afternoon the 2017 Pittsburgh Pirates will play their final game of the season. Steven Brault will make the start for the Bucs, while the Nats will send lefty Gio Gonzalez to the hill. The Pirates will be looking to earn a series split with the Nationals, which would lead to the Bucs finishing the season 75-87.