Padres Win Close One in Absence of Pirate Offense

The Pirates scraped together a mere five singles and three walks as they once again failed to support a strong outing from Ross Ohlendorf. The Pirates starter allowed just one run on five hits and one walk in seven innings. He struck out five. Clayton Richard was equally good for the visiting Friars. He gave up just one unearned run (in the first inning) on four hits in six innings.

It wasn’t decided until the 9th. An error by Brian Bixler and two walks set up a sac fly from Henry Blanco for the game winning run. That made a loser of Phil Dumatrait and a winner of Luke Gregerson, who tossed a scoreless 8th. Heath Bell earned the save with a scoreless 9th.

The Good

Ohlendorf, once again.

The Bad

The offense, once again.

The Rest

Despite an ERA approaching 3.00, Ohlendorf is winless in his last five starts.

Garrett Jones had started every Pirate game since July 1, but got the day off.

Steve Pearce was 0-3 with three Ks.

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Ohlendorf’s Mistakes Prove Costly

Frustrated tonight. Missed the Notre Dame game due to travel. Caught the bulk of it on the radio. I’m of the opinion that a Lou Holtz defense wouldn’t have buckled with the game on the line. Listened to OSU/USC and now home in time to watch the finish.

And, of course, checking on my beloved, pathetic Buccos. Poor Ross Ohlendorf. He gave up only four hits in 6-1/3. Two of them were dingers. Both came with a man on. Four runs against. And he got just two runs of support. So, he took the loss.

Brian Moehler gave up both Pirate runs over six innings. But, he didn’t get the decision. Jeff Fulchino tossed a scoreless seventh and was the winner since Miguel Tejada’s tie-breaking dinger came in the home half of the 7th (Carlos Lee hit the other homer). Jose Valverde closed things out.

The Good

Ohlendorf – here’s hoping he keeps it up next year, too.

Ronny Cedeno and Lastings Milledge each had two hits.

The Bad

The losing. The lack of an offense.

Notre Dame gagging.

The Rest

Fulchino has two wins and has allowed no runs in 5-1/3 innings over four appearances against Pittsburgh in 2009.

Over his last 15 starts, Ohlendorf is just 5-5 despite an ERA around 3.50. He has allowed more than three earned runs in a start just twice since July.

Lee needs six more RBI to reach 100 for the fifth straight year.

And now the Buckeyes have lost…

Pujols PH HR Delivers 81st Loss

Poor Ross Ohlendorf. Let’s hope he can pitch like this in 2010 and get more favorable results. With Tony LaRussa resting many of his regulars (Albert Pujols and Matt Holliday among others didn’t start), Ohlendorf struck out 11, walked one and allowed just one unearned run in eight innings. On the other side Mitchell Boggs was also tough againstt he punchless Pirates. The Bucs lone tally was an RBI double from Lastings Milledge that scored Garrett Jones.

The Pirates loaded the bases in the 9th but came up empty.

In the 10th, Albert Pujols clobbered a pitch from Matt Capps for a dinger – about a month after Capps hit him with a pitch and was tossed.Ryan Franklin put two runners on in the bottom of the 10th, but the Pirates failed to tie it up.

The Good

Ohlendorf pushed his ERA under 4.00.

Jones and Milledge combined for five of the Pirates six hits. Jones had three hits and walked twice.

The Bad

Gah – 81 losses.

The offense.

The Rest

Ohlendorf whiffed the side on 9 pitches in the seventh (Khalil Greene, Julio Lugo and Jason LaRue). He became the 40th pitcher ever and the second Pirate ever to do it. Jeff Robinson got Leon Durham, Andre Dawson and Rafael Palmeiro in the 8th inning back on 9/9/87 pitching in relief.

Jones reached base five times in one game for the first time in his career.

Ohlendorf’s 11 whiffs area high water mark for Pirate hurlers in 2009. He and Paul Maholm each tallied 8, in a start. No Pirate starter reached 11 whiffs since Ian Snell on 4/3/07 – his first start of the year. Last time someon got 12 strike outs was Kip Wells (winner for the Reds last night) on 7/5/05.

This was the longest career outing for Mitchell Boggs. His previous high in innings of work was six. This was also a career best in innings for Ohlendorf.

Give Pujols the MVP now.

 

Ohlendorf deserved better

The Pirates did not deserve to win yesterday’s game in Milwaukee. They managed just one run on nine hits and four walks, stranding eight base runners and hitting into four double plays in the process. This output came against a struggling Jeff Suppan, who lugged a 5.73 FIP into the game. No, with offense like that, the Pirates did not deserve to win.

However, Ross Ohlendorf did not deserve to lose. Ohlendorf cruised through four innings, locked in a 1-1 tie with Suppan. He unraveled in the fifth, allowing three runs en route to a 4-1 loss. But let’s take a look at how that inning unfolded. Ohlendorf jammed the leadoff hitter, leading to a soft pop-up behind the pitcher’s mound. It fell between everyone, skipped past Ronny Cedeno, and went for a uninspiring single. One out later, Jason Kendall bounced a ball just inside third base for a double, and the Pirates intentionally walked Frank Catalanotto to load the bases for Suppan with one out.

Already experiencing some bad fortune, Ohlendorf was royally screwed by home plate umpire Damien Beal during the Suppan at-bat. Suppan was clearly content to stand like a statue at the plate, and Beal (apparently) was subsequently overwhelmed with sympathy, refusing to ring him up as Ohlendorf repeatedly pounded the strike zone. Courtesy of Brooks Baseball, here is the pitch location of that confrontation (from the viewpoint of the catcher).

Six pitches, four clearly in the strike zone, zero swings, and an RBI walk for Suppan. One out later, Craig Counsell flared a soft single to left, scoring two more runs. Final score 4-1.

Again, the Pirates did not deserve to win after scoring just one run. But Beal’s calls in the Suppan at-bat were lacking, to say the least.

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A Walk and 4 Double Plays Sink Pirates as Brewers Sweep

The Pirates collected a fair share of runners through hits and walks. Unfortunately, they had more double plays than runs.

Ross Ohlendorf probably deserved better, but he was involved in his own undoing. With the game knotted at one each (solo homers from Casey McGehee and Garrett Jones – ROY candidates both) in the fifth, Ohlendorf issued a bases loaded walk to his counterpart Jeff Suppan. One out later Craig Counsell hit a two run single for the final two runs of the game.

Suppan danced into and out of trouble all afternoon. Pittsburgh hit into double plays in the 1st, 2nd, 5th and 6th innings.

Ohlendorf allowed just five hits and struck out six in six innings. Suppan allowed 8 hits and three walks in six innings.

The Good

Jones

Lastings Milledge had three hits and Brandon Moss had two doubles.

Ohlendorf coulda/shoulda been the winner with this kind of outing.

The Bad

Not enough hits with men on base.

The Rest

Jason Kendall stole two bases.

Ryan Doumit was behind the plate following a 1.5 game benching. Could’ve been due to day game following a night game that he was playing instead of Jason Jaramillo. Doumit was 0-4 with a whiff and a GIDP.

A handful of NL rookies have double digits in dingers – Jones, McGehee, Andrew McCutchen, Jake Fox, Colby Rasmus and Kyle Blanks.

This was Milledge’s first three hit game as a Pirate.

This was the second time this year that Moss has had two doubles in one game.

Chris Bootcheck has cut his ERA in half over his last three outings. It now rests on 12.00.

Not going to mention Milwaukee’s ridiculous winning streak in WI against the Pirates. Not going to mention it.

Counsell came into the game hitting .292 against Pittsburgh, his second best mark against any opponent.

Suppan is now 14-3 in his career versus the Buccos, the most wins he has against any franchise.

 

Cutch Bails Out Capps in Walk Off Win

The evening was full of drama. I’m in Chicago and took in my first game ever at Wrigley. I was on hand to watch Carlos Zambrano and the Cubs get pounded by Washington (shout out to Dave and Ross who are rooming with each other temporarily). Elijah Dukes hit a grand slam to blow the game open.Got to see Tom Gorzelanny come in from the bullpen and pitch. Plus, Aramis Ramirez. Big night for ex-Buccos.

Also did quite a bit of scoreboard watching as the game I witnessed live was quickly getting out of hand.

Jimmy Rollins provided early fireworks with a pair of solo homers off of Ross Ohlendorf. The Pirates countered with their own long ball as homers from Ryan Doumit and Steve Pearce put the home town nine up 3-2. Ohlendorf went 6-1/3 and allowed just the two runs on five hits. The Pirates trotted out three relievers to be able to hand the ball to Matt Capps in the 9th. After a pair of doubles tied the scored, Shane Victorino tripled over the head of Andrew McCutchen who misplayed the ball, allowing the go ahead run to score.

Cutch got it back in the 9th. Brad Lidge was on and didn’t retire a batter. A single, a wild pitch and a single from Brandon Moss tied the score. McCutchen then delivered a walk off dinger. Ball game. Bucs win.

That was Lidge’s 9th blown save of the year. Capps has blown four times, but picked up the win in this case. Phils starter Joe Blanton allowed three runs in six innings and struck out seven.

The Good

Coming back and winning.

Cutch in the clutch

The Bad

Blowing a win for Ohlendorf.

Garrett Jones was 0-3 with a walk and three whiffs.

The Rest

Doumit had his first two walk game since 9/3/08.

Blanton had allowed just one earned run in 14-1/3 IP in two previous outings against the Pirates.

Capps blew five saves in 2008. His ERA last year was a full 3.50 runs lower than where it stands now.

This was McCutchen’s first walk off homer and the first time he homered after the sixth inning.

The Rest

Ohlendorf Gets To Double Digits as Bucs Snap L Streak

Ross Ohlendorf allowed three runs in six plus innings to pick up his 10th win of the season, becoming the first Pirate to hit double digits in wins. He yielded solo homers to Troy Tulowitzki and Carlos Gonzalez among the four hits he allowed.

The Pirates were aided by the wildness of Rockies rookie starter Jhouyls Chacin. He lasted just 2-2/3 innings as he allowed just one hit, but gave up six walks. That lone hit was an RBI double from Ryan Doumit in the second that scored Andrew McCutchen. That run was negated with Tulowitzki’s dinger in the home half of the second. But Chacin’s wildness got the best of him and knocked him from the game in the third. Chacin walked McCutchen and Garrett Jones. On an attempted double steal, Chris Iannetta’s poor throw allowed Cutch to score and Jones to take third. After a two out walk to Steve Pearce, Chacin was yanked in favor of ex-Pirate Josh Fogg. Delwyn Young delivered a two run triple and Ronny Cedeno singled him in as the Pirates scored four times in the frame.

Fogg pitched 4-1/3 and gave up two runs. 

The Good

Have to be happy with Ohlendorf’s season.

McCutchen scored three times, doubled, walked three times and stole three bases.

Jones doubled twice and walked.

Nine walks as a club.

Each of the starting 8 had a knock.

The Bad

I got nothin’.

The Rest

Ohlendorf is the first Pirate pitcher to hit double digits since Tom Gorzelanny and Paul Maholm in 2007. Gorzy won his 10th game on 8/10/07. Maholm did it on 8/23/07.

The nine walks were the second most for the club this season (11 on 6/14 against Detroit). The pitching staff has yielded nine or more walks twice.

After 112 games, the team is 46-66. At the same juncture last year, the mark was 51-61.

Both Fogg and another former Bucco, Joe Beimel, pitched in relief.

This was the third time McCutchen has scored three runs or more in a game in 2009.

The last Pirate to steal three bases in one game was Matt Lawton on 7/26/05.