Dempster Shuts Down Buccos

Ryan Dempster tossed a complete game shutout. That’s all you really need to know. Beyond that, the details are that the Pirates defense – a low toss from Garrett Jones to Kevin Hart covering first and a miscue from Delwyn Young – allowed three unearned runs to score.

Dempster allowed five hits, walked two and whiffed five. Hart went four and gave up six runs (three were earned as previously noted). He gave up six hits and hurt himself with four walks.

Derrek Lee, Micah Hoffpauir and Jeff Baker drove in two runs each for Chicago.

The Good

The bullpen went five scoreless innings.

Andy LaRoche had a pair of doubles.

The Bad

The lack of offense is staggering.

The Rest

Dempster’s last shutout came in 2001.

The Pirates have been shutout 16 times in 2009. That’s four more than the next closest. Last time the Pirates were shutout with more frequency was 1985 when they were blanked 19 times.

Probably a toss up between Torii Hunter and Derrek Lee as to who the second best player was from the 1993 draft. The best was of course A-Rod.

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Bucs Can’t Overcome Duke’s Ugly First

Inventing new ways to lose nightly. That could be the motto for next year.

The Cubs opened the game with eight consecutive hits. The Pirates collected just nine hits all game and the Cubs had that many before anyone was out. Amazingly, Zach Duke actually survived that to pitch four innings and give up a total of 12 hits and eight earnies.

Virgil Vasquez got to mop up and the beneficiary of that support was Ryan Dempster. He gave up eight hits in 6-1/3 to get the win.

Aramis Ramirez, Geovany Soto and Kosuke Fukudome each drove in two runs in the seven run first inning. Garrett Jones hit a solo homer for the Pirates – his 19th on the season.

The Good

Jones.

Five innings of two hit ball from the bullpen

The Bad

Are you kidding?

The Rest

The eight straight hits to start the game ties a record. Last time it happened was 9/25/90 when the Bombers did it to the O’s. The victims were rookie Anthony Telford (no outs and six hits allowed) followed by rookie Mickey Weston (gave up the final two hits before pitching three innings overall). Not sure if there is any significance in this, but Kevin Maas hit his 20th homer in that game for the Yanks. Not that I’m comparing him to Garrett Jones.

The first out in tonight’s game was a sac bunt from Dempster. That was kind of Lou Piniella. A groundout from Oscar Azocar was the first out on 9/25/90.

Back on 9/25/90, the Pirates were in the early stages of a seven game winning streak that would keep them ahead of the Mets on their way to the division crown. Also back then, no one knew who Barack Obama was. No one realized that the Rangers (and future president George W.Bush) had made a mistake by trading Sammy Sosa to the White Sox. Pete Rose was still denying his involvement in gambling on baseball. Memories…