PNC Park | 1:35 | Youman vs. Woody Williams | Box
Shane Youman pitched a gem of a game, holding the Astros to one run through eight innings.
Unfortunately, Woody Williams was a notch better. The Astros’ starter threw eight scoreless frames, Brad Lidge came on to earn his third save, and the Pirates were shut out for the ninth time this season, 1-0.
The Bucs earned just six hits this afternoon in another display of offensive offense. Matt Kata led the way with two hits from the second spot of the order. Newcomer Cesar Izturis started at shortstop, went 1 for 3 and turned in a brilliant defensive play in the field.
Same old story—decent pitching, solid glovework but absolutely nothing going on at the dish.
I’m not going to hide the pre-game discussion behind the jump as is the usual custom. Consider it a tribute of sorts to Jack Wilson and Salomon Torres.
We might be seeing Jack Wilson and Salomon Torres in black and gold at PNC Park for the last time.
The Pirates hit the road tomorrow, playing in New York and Philadelphia this week before returning home next Tuesday, July 31. By game time that evening, our roster might have undergone significant turnover.
Still, if you’re headed to the ballpark this afternoon, realize that it may be the last time that Jack’s one of the good guys. Even if you’re not a fan of his play of late, you might let out an extra loud cheer for the memories over the years. When Salomon runs in from the bullpen, you might feel the need to show a little appreciation.
I write about trade rumors without much passion, as if these guys aren’t more than names to me. I might as well be creating a roster on a video game. But they are real, and win or lose they’ve given us their best. You can’t blame them for 14 losing seasons.
They aren’t the perfect fit for the current edition of the Pittsburgh Baseball Club, but Jack and Sully are the longest tenured Pirates and have proven their worth over the years. Even if a batting average is a bit low, or an ERA a little too high, they’ve showed time and again that they’re assets to the community and caring ballplayers.
Thanks for the effort, guys, and best of luck.