PNC Park | 7:05 | Herrera vs. Todd Wellemeyer | Box
Yoslan Herrera joins the list of Pirate hurlers who do not appear ready for prime time. He was creamed for six runs in 4-1/3. The rest of the bullpen was nicked pretty good and the Pirates found themselves down 10-4 going into the bottom of the 8th.
Then the Pirates pulled a rabbit out. Jason Bay hit a two run homer in the 8th – his second homer of the day. In the 9th, Nate McLouth drilled a three run homer to cut the lead to one. With one out and runners on the corners, Bay came up. Instead of a homer, he hit a roller right to shortstop. Tailor made DP. And Bay slipped coming out of the box. Only Aaron Miles couldn’t make the pivot. Bay was safe. Tying run scored.
Onto extra innings. Troy Glaus led off the Cards half of the inning with a homer off Denny Bautista. The Bucs weren’t done. With one gone and one one in the home half of 11th, Jason Michaels stroked a walk off homer. I’m not sure who was doing color for FoxSports Pittsburgh (ESPN led off SportsCenter with this game and played the feed from the booth). Whoever it was – maybe John Wehner – exclaimed, “I don’t believe what I just saw!” Umm, not cool. That’s Jack Buck yelled when Gibson homered off Eck in Game One of the 1988 World Series. That phrase belongs to that homer. He might as well have said, “Do you believe in miracles? Yes!”
Michaels blast made a winner of Bautista and a loser of Chris Perez.
The Cardinals mashed 22 hits. Each of the first seven hitters in their lineup had at least two hits. Ryan Ludwick knocked in four runs. Bay drove in five.
The Pirates made a flurry of moves again and guess what. Yoslan Herrera will be starting today instead of Phil Dumatrait who is headed back to the DL. Only five pitchers born in Cuba have won more than 100 games – Dolf Luque, Mike Cuellar, Camilo Pascual, Livan Hernandez and Pedro Ramos. Given that Herrera is already 27, it is unlikely he will join that list. But, you never know. The work gets started tonight.
After going 6-9 last year at AA he is 5-8 this year with Altoona and also made one start (a winning one) for Indy.
Todd Wellemeyer has set his career mark in wins already this year with seven. He has beaten the Pirates twice in three starts in 2008. The most recent was May 30.
Overall Wellemeyer has made four starts and eleven relief appearances. He is 3-1 with a 3.03 ERA over 38-2/3 innings of work. The Pirates are hitting an even .200 against him (21-105). The club has two homers – Jason Bay and Nate McLouth. Bay is just 2-13 with seven whiffs. Xavier Nady (4-11) and Jack Wilson (4-10) are the only Bucs with more than two hits.
The club also brought Franquelis Osoria off the DL and back from a rehab assignment. To make room, the sent Luis Munoz back down. The Bucs also signed former pitcher Jimmy Anderson to be the roving minor league fitness and diet coach. Just kidding.