Final Score: Pirates 8 Tigers 0
Why The Pirates Won: This looked like a mismatch from the start, and it was with the Pirates winning 8-0. However, it looked like a mismatch for the Tigers. They had one of the hottest starting pitchers Eduardo Rodriguez taking the mound against the historic hitless wonders of the last 2 weeks, the Pittsburgh Pirates. So, what happens? The Pirates light him up for 4 runs on 6 hits and 2 walks in just 5 innings. For the rest of the game the Pirates added 4 more runs on 8 hits to break out of their slump and finish with the miraculous 2-3 road trip and move to 23-20 for the season. They did all of this with Ke’Bryan (Why Do You Think I’m A Lead Off Hitter) Hayes hanging an 0 for 5 collar at the top of the order. Meanwhile the only loud hits the Tigers could muster off Rich Hill were foul balls. Over 6 innings Hill only gave up one cheap off the glove hit, striking out 7 and walking 2, for his best outing of the season by far. In fact, that would be the only hit of the game for the Tigers, as the Pirate bullpen shut down the Tigers over the last 3 innings striking out another 7 batters. The Pirates came that close to pitching a combined no hitter. It was a surprising, but much needed blowout win for the Pirates.
Key Moment Of The Game: The 2nd inning had the look of another Pirate offensive failure. Connor Joe led off with a single. The Pirates caught a break on an 8 pitch walk to Rodolfo Castro when the 7th pitch was called a ball, that looked like it was well in the strike zone. Then the Pirates went back to normal. Ji Hwan Bae laid down a horrible bunt that forced the runner out at third. Chris (Look I’M Only A Triple A Player) Owings takes a called third strike for the 2nd out. Coming to the plate with his .150 average is Austin Hedges. Time to see what’s in the refrigerator. As I start to get out of my chair, there is a crack of the bat, and it appears that Hedges has hit a deep fly ball that may get to the wall. No, it looks like the centerfielder is about to make the catch, I hope there still is some left over chicken in the fridge. Wait! Off his effing glove it goes, and the Pirates score 2 runs and Hedges is actually standing on 2nd base. Hayes is coming up next, definitely go to the fridge now.
Next Game: Tomorrow night, Diamondbacks in Pittsburgh. The Pirates start a 6 game homestand against the Diamondbacks and the Rangers. They need to go 4-2 if this is a sign of righting the ship. Johan Oviedo will make the start tomorrow night and he really needs to make it a good one. It has been a roller coaster season so far, but if someone had told you at the beginning of the season that the Pirates would lose Oneil Cruz for an extended period of time and be 23-20 you would have said hell yeah. They need to make some hay on this homestand.