Defense wins chmapionships, but not a game against the Nats




Three “Baseball Tonight” web gems, one of which was by the guy above Andy LaRoche, was not enough to keep the Pirates in the game. Ronny Cedeno’s backhanded grab and diving double play didn’t allow Pittsburgh to put runs on the board. They fell to Washington 8-4. It is tough to swallow a loss like this. One because it was the Nationals, two because it was the Nationals, and three BECAUSE IT WAS THE NATIONALS!

Sorry, but its true. Even though most normal fans would say, “Matt come on its the PIRATES.” But the Bucs had no business losing this game. The bullpen faltered and gave up 4 runs after following starter Charlie Morton. Morton pitched pretty well through 5 innings of work. He shut out the Nationals and struck out 2 batters. The straw that broke the Camel’s back came in the sixth when Adam Dunn belted a homerun. It was tough to swallow and the runs kept coming from hits and a triple by Christian Guzman. It made me very upset to see Charlie let picthes get away from him. After meeting him in Arizona I really have admired his attitude and I know he has it in him to go out and do a solid job night in and night out. I’ll still be rooting hard for him, I just hope the stuffs there longer in the game next time he goes out. The following inning the bullpen came in to give up 4 runs as well. A homerun by Ryan Zimmerman headlined the inning follwed by a bunch of small ball that gave the Nats a good sized lead.

The Bucs offense is not off the hook here either. What started out as a promising game turned ugly and filled with goose-eggs. Andrew McCutchen struck again leading off the first inning with a homerun. He now has 7 on the year and is 2nd on the team with homeruns. It’s great to see that his 3-homerun night was not a fluke and he does have some power built inside.

cutch-milledge.jpgIts a great seeing this sight. The 1-2 punch of McCutchen and Milledge is a match made in heaven. Kind of like and M&M, no pun intended. The charisma they have and established chemistry is great in the clubhouse and at the top of the lineup. Although Milledge did not see the basepaths this game and was 0-5 he still has what the Bucs need. This was the only game Lastings has played in for Pittsburgh without collecting a hit. His failure to reach base may have been a reason for the Bucs failure to put more runs on the board but the rest of the lineup is not off the hook.

3 runs were scored in the first inning and it looked like they were set up nicely to cruise for the W. Steve Pearce, Garrett Jones, Ryan Doumit, set up runs and Delwyn Young scarificed a run in. The rest of the game was dull as the Pirates couldn’t score a run until the bottom of the ninth when Doumit doubled in a run.

On top of Milledge’s o-fer, Ronny Cedeno and Delwyn Young were as well. Ryan Doumit really needed this game to turn his game around. He did not get a hit in the first 3 games of the series. Tonight he was 3-5 with a run and RBI. From the cleanup spot he needs production and he showed it tonight. If he can turn things around quickly and recover from his early season injury he will be a coveted player at the catching position.

The Pirates finished off this series splitting four games with Washington. They start right back up tomorrow hosting the Diamondbacks. I will be attending this game and am very excited to do so. Its kind of funny that of the last three MLB games I’ve been too, the D-Backs have been involved. (Arizona was in Colorado when I was there, at home in Chase Field when I was there, and now here in Pittsburgh.) It is safe to say they are quite familiar. I just hope this result is a little different. The Diamondbacks took 3 of 4 from the Pirates out in the Grand Canyon State.

Tonight, I leave with a great quote from a great player.

“I loved the city of Pittsburgh,” Sanchez said. “I loved going to the ballpark every day and playing for those fans. They’ll always have a special place in my heart for the support they showed after I won that batting title.

“That’s a baseball town in my eyes. I hope all the trades work out, because they deserve a winner there. I’m sure it’s hard for them right now, but I’ll always be watching to see how they’re doing.”

This quote was taken from an article by Jerry Crasnick. It’s greta to see Freddy speaking with such admiration and understanding. I still wish him the best even though he is 3,000 miles away. It does however pain me to see this….                                            freddy giants.jpg  



  1. JQuist

    *Another McCutchen homerun was awesome to see – He’s taking his talent beyond the ‘hits’ margin at this point and becoming the heart of the team with every new feat. If he can park three in four games, then he’s also capable of having a 30 homerun season one of these years…

    Rough loss in Washington though. The Nationals played well, and Pitt got a taste of the Nyjer and Burnett they traded away. I can’t believe how well Doumit’s doing – It’s great to see him healthy again because he’s a monster…

  2. juliasrants

    The Nats are “better” then their record would have you think. Just as the Red Sox and Yankees! And the Pirates, I’m sure, will bounce back from this. I can’t help but wonder if all the trades of late are taking a mental toll on the Buccs. Good luck and have fun at the game tonight!


  3. devilabrit

    That was a tough loss, I agree they shouldn’t have lost that one, but as with a number of games when one team gets a few unexpected hits and scores a couple of runs, its like everything goes there way and unfortunately the Pirates got it against them in the 6th and 7th last night.. Plenty more to play, have fun at the game

  4. southernbelle

    Matt: I’m sorry about Freddy Sanchez. It must be very hard to say goodbye to all the players you admire. I wish, for the sake of the fans, the Pirates would actually keep their players.
    Minor League baseball is a lot of fun, but I would also rather go to major league games. The minor league games are really cheap, and it’s a short drive since I live in the Hudson Valley. It’s a better value. But no question: if I had the money, I would buy Yankee season tickets! -Virginia

  5. southernbelle

    Matt: Peekskill is about 45 minutes from Dutchess Stadium. You’d take Route 9 north from Peekskill until Interstate 84 west. It’s right off 84 in Wappinger’s Falls. It’s a very easy drive. I am familiar with the town a bit. It is a nice place. -Virginia

  6. heartruss

    Sorry about the loss. I hope that when the dust settles from all the trading that you have a fantastic team. I think it’s really hard when so many players get traded. As you can see, I become very attached to my players. That’s why I dread the trading. At the beginning of one seson, I didn’t know any of the players except Olmeido Saenz and he was just the pinch hitter. It was very distressing.

  7. metmainman

    I remember when Milledge was a Met. He did not have very good behavior. At first everyone thought he had a lot of energy and he was a great clubhouse guy, but eventually he became a distraction. When he hit his first major league homer he first jumping around all over the place, even high fiving fans while running the bases. I don’t know if he ever matured.

  8. ibleedpinstripes

    I was incredibly shocked when they traded Sanchez and Wilson. I always thought they meant too much to the organization. After I found out I figured things in Pittsburgh wouldn’t be the same. I hope you guys bounce back and the guys you have now warm up to the fans. Tough loss. It’s never fun to lose to a sub-.500 team.

    – Lisa

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