Final Score: Pirates 6 Rangers 4
Why The Pirates Won: Luis Ortiz picked a great time to pitch the best game of his early career, going 7 and 2/3 innings only giving up 2 runs on 5 hits, 2 walks, while striking out 4. He did this against one of the best hitting teams in baseball. The Pirate bats did get 11 hits to go along with 5 walks, but through the first 6 innings could not get the big hit, thus only scoring 1 run going into the bottom of the 7th.
The Key Moment Of The Game: With the score tied 1-1 in the bottom of the 7th the Pirates quickly made 2 outs and you had to figure that it was going to be 1-1 going into the top of the 8th. This looked like it could be the third game in a row that the bullpen would blow. But wait, ye of little faith. Reynolds got a base hit, with Suwinski following that up with a walk. Carlos Santana comes up with the big hit, but Reynolds is thrown out at the plate. Replay reverses the call, and the Pirates lead 2-1. All right, Holderman in the 8th, Bednar in the 9th, the bullpen redeems themselves. Don’t get that hot dog yet. Hayes walks. Tucupita Marcano comes up to the plate and works the count to 2-2. On pitch number 5 he drills it deep over the centerfield fence for his 1st career grand slam. Paramedics had to be called to 3 sections of the stadium. The Pirates led 6-1 over the mighty Rangers. The Rangers made it interesting over the last 2 innings, but the Pirates hung on for a much needed win to get 3 games over .500 at 25-22.
Next Game: Tonight, Rangers in Pittsburgh. The Pirates go up against another hot pitcher in Nathan Eovaldi, who in his last 3 starts has not gone less than 7 innings and missed a complete game by 1/3 of an inning 2 starts ago. He will face Rich (Can I Put Two Good Starts Together At 43) Hill. The last time Hill had this kind of mismatch he pitched his best game of the season. The Pirates are battling. Will it be enough?