Game #140 at St. Louis

Busch Stadium | 2:10 | Bullington vs. Mike Maroth | Box
Not much went right for the Pirates Thursday afternoon.
Bryan Bullington, John Van Benschoten and Dave Davidson—all recently recalled from Triple-A Indianapolis—combined to throw 5.1 innings, allowing 17 hits and 13 earned runs. The game was sidetracked by nearly two hours of rain delays before finally being called in the ninth inning with the Cardinals ahead 16-4.
Center fielder Rick Ankiel led the Redbirds’ charge, going 3 for 7 with 3 runs, 7 RBI and 2 HR.
Later in the day it was reported that in 2004 Ankiel purchased a year’s supply of Human Growth Hormone “from a Florida pharmacy that was part of a national illegal prescription drug-distribution operation” shortly before the slugger made his well-publicized transition from the pitching mound to the batter’s box.
Pre-game Thoughts
Bring on Bryan Bullington! I don’t expect a Buchholz-esque performance, given that Bullington hasn’t pitched like a top tier prospect this year in AAA. I do expect him to be an improvement over Tony Armas, even though Armas pitched pretty well last night.
Bullington is 11-9 overall for Indianapolis in 2007. He started off 4-0 and has faltered a bit since then. He doesn’t strike out too many hitters – just 89 in 150-2/3 innings pitched. And his ERA is a less than stellar 4.00 on the nose. And he’s lost his last three starts for the Indians. Yet, I’m optimistic.
His opponent will be Mike Maroth. While Joel Piniero has worked out for the Cards, Maroth has not. Not even close. He has yet to win a game for St. Louis after being acquired from Detroit and has only pitched well twice in eight appearances (six starts).
He’s made two career appearances against the Buccos. The last one was in relief and was a disaster. Back on 8/1, he retired five hitters and gave up seven earned runs. For his career in Busch Stadium, he is 0-2 in two starts (both in 2007) with an 8.00 ERA.
Josh Phelps is the only Pirate to have faced Maroth more than 10 times. He is 6-19 with a homer and four RBI. Freddy Sanchez is 4-5. Nobody else has seen him more than four times.
Tuesday Night Thoughts
So long, Andy Roddick.

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