Bucs Reel In Series Against Fish By 5-4 Tally
K-Man opened with a double against Sandy Alcantara, and a one-out bouncer moved him along but that was all the Pirates first-bell action. Chris Archer had a nine-pitch first with two whiffs. No luck in the second for Pittsburgh, going down on eight tosses. A leadoff Marlin rap was eliminated via a caught stealing, in between two more K. Jake started the third with a double, Arch couldn’t bunt him up, then advancing on another one-away roller, before also dying on the corner. Archie lost the eight hitter with one gone, and came back by fanning the next pair. Melky singled to start the fourth. J-Bell hit into a force (surviving a challenge on the safe call; good thing) and Redbeard singled him to third. Gregory K’ed, but JHK picked him up with a two-run double, turning on 98 MPH heat. Jake was walked and Archie grounded out to finish up. The Fish banged a leadoff double and then drew a walk. An out later, Harold Ramirez homered off a two-seamer, and so much for the shutdown inning. Then came a pair of singles around a K to put Fish on the corners. The pitcher maintained the beat, knocking in a run. A walk juiced the sacks. Clint kept Arch on the hill, and though he fell behind 3-0, he came back to get the third out.
|Melky just keeps on… photo Denis Poroy/Getty|
K-Man singled and stole second before Bryan walked in the fifth. Melky lined out to second and J-Bell’s fly to right moved Newman to third, and yah, he stayed there, the third time the Bucs had a guy at second with no outs and left him on. Ramirez kept on raking against his old homies, doubling with two outs before another K closed it out. Gregory doubled to crank up the sixth, and this time, the Bucs cashed in when Corey D smacked a pinch hit, opp field two-bagger with two gone to narrow the gap. Ric Rod took over and worked a clean frame. Nick Anderson came out for the seventh. Bryan singled, then Melky ripped a center-cut curve to into the RF corner for a triple to knot the score. J-Bell followed with a two-bagger to put the Bucs on top. A fly moved Bell up 90′, but Gregory’s grounder froze him, then Kang got nothing but hooks and went down swinging. Kyle Crick scaled the hill and walked the first Fish. A whiff and 6-4-3 DP cleaned it up nicely.
Tayron Guerrero spun a clean eighth. Crick stayed on; a pop in no-man’s land glanced off J-Bell’s glove for an opening knock. Kyle got a K and coaxed a pop, then Felipe was beckoned to face Miguel Rojas, a RH hitter, but with a reverse split (Kyle was also at 25 pitches, which seems to be his limit this year). It worked; The Nightmare got a first-pitch pop out. Wei-Yin Chen had a couple of balls banged by Reynolds and Bell, but they became hard outs, so there’s no safety net for Vazquez. He got a comebacker and strikeout before a grounder into left kept the Fish swimmin’. The next pitch resulted in a grounder, too, this one into Fraze’s mitt, and the 4-3 meant you can raise the Roger.
|The Fish were up a Crick… photo Pittsburgh Pirates|
Dunno what’s with Archie; he has one inning where he loses it, and we have no idea why the sinker, which he ditched in Tampa, shouldn’t be equally shunned in Pittsburgh. Once again, he only got through five innings (101 pitches) but with tomorrow off, Clint got some extra mileage out of Kyle and Felipe, and it was enough to carry the day. And that extra zero by Archer was key in allowing Hurdle to shorten the pen to the A-Team.
- K-Man and Melky had two hits each to pace the attack; the lineup collected 11 hits on the day.
- Kevin Newman and Bryan Reynolds both own nine-game hitting streaks after today. Colin Moran has hits in 12 of his last 15 starts and 17 RBI over that span.
- In 64-2/3 IP, Archie has given up a league-high 17 homers. He threw his Achilles’ Heel pitch, the sinker, six times – the first was fouled, the next four were balls, and the last one left the yard; he threw no more two-seamers after that.
- Yefry Ramirez, a recent pickup from the Orioles, is here as a long man today. The 25-year-old RHP was 1-10/6.07 in parts of 2018-19, working both from the pen and as a starter. He took the place of Dario Agrazal, yesterday’s starter, who was returned to Indy.
- On his radio show, NH said the Bucs are in a “tough stretch, but we’re getting healthy” fwiw.
- SS Oneil Cruz is part of Baseball America‘s 2015 International signing Class “All Time Group.”
- Nick Kingham showed Toronto that he’s gonna be a project yesterday – he gave up two runs on five hits in two innings of relief against the ‘Stros (not the easier club to debut against), including a Josh Reddick dinger on the first pitch he tossed.
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