Final Score: Pirates 4 Reds 1
How The 2023 Pirates Did: Oneil Cruz went 2 for 5 and scored a run. I don’t know if Miguel Andujar will be part of the 2023 Pirates but he got the big hit of the night, a 1 out double to drive in 3 runs and give the Pirates a 4-1 lead that the bullpen protected the final 2 innings. Will Crowe had his first solid outing in a long time, pitching 2 scoreless innings, striking out 2, and throwing only 24 pitches. Things really got back to normal with David Bednar picking up the save. The rest of the 2023 Pirates while not spectacular got 5 hits combine with 5 walks. The only one not getting on base was Jason Delay. Then there was Zack Josh Van Collins Meter going 0 for 4, striking out 3 times, and now is 1 for 25 as a Pirate. What a guy!
Key Moment of The Game: Mitch Keller getting out of the bases loaded jam in the top of the 5th. After 9 pitches there were 2 out and nobody on base. Then the bases were loaded on 2 singles and a walk. But Keller got Aristides Aquino to fly out to right field.
Next Game: This afternoon Reds in Pittsburgh. I guess because tickets are $10 the Pirates feel it’s ok to keep playing Zack Josh Van Collins Meter. It makes you wonder why they even DFA’d Josh Van Meter. Maybe he was doing too well to stay on the team. That must have been it.
Final Score: Pirates 8 Reds 3
How The 2023 Pirates Did: The Pirate bats went to small ball last night as they had 13 hits, 11 singles and 2 doubles by Jack Suwinski. The second Suwinski double drove in the 2uns that put the Pirates ahead 4-2. Oneil Cruz had 4 hits and scored a run. Ke’Bryan Hayes had 2 hits, scored a run, and drove in a run. Roansy Contreras pitched 4 innings and gave up 2 runs on 2 hits and striking out 2. The Pirates pulled away at the end and it was another nice win against our new friends the Reds. We won, even though we played Zack Josh Van Collins Meter, along with someone by the name of Jose Godoy. Van Collins Meter got a sacrifice RBI last night, as he continues to shine at the plate, with a batting average of .048, since joining the Pirates. Godoy has a batting average .000 and did not disappoint going 0 for 4 with 2 strike outs. Where do the Pirates find these guys?
Key Moment of The Game: The Zack Josh Van Collins Meter sacrifice fly in the 7th. You knew it was the Pirates night if this guy can drive in a run. The bullpen did well with a 4 and 6 run lead.
Next Game: Tonight, Reds in Pittsburgh. I can’t wait to see Jose Godoy again tonight and I am sure we will see him. Right now, the money line on him ever getting a hit this season is +567. The end of the season is at least in sight.
Final Score: Pirates 3 Cubs 8
How The 2023 Pirates Did: At the plate it was feast or famine for the 2023 Pirates. Reynolds, Cruz, Castro, and Hayes went 6 for 13 with 2 RBI’s and 3 runs scored. On the flip side, Bae, Suwinski, Mitchel and Delay, went 0 for 13, with 2 walks and 1 RBI. Pirate management couldn’t help themselves and had to put Zack Josh Van Collins Meter in the lineup. He added to his superb stats, which now total 1 for 19, 2 walks and 7 strikeouts. In the field the Pirates made 4 errors which contributed to 3 of the Cubs 8 runs. Cruz looked particular bad on a ground ball the allowed 2 runs to score. This is a team that looks like they would like the season to be over yesterday. They are the definition of lackluster. On a brighter note, Luis Ortiz had another solid 80 pitch performance only giving up 1 hit, while walking 2 and striking out 7. He was charged with a run and the loss thanks to Manny Banuelos’s incompetence.
Key Play of The Game: The top of the 7th was a disaster for the Pirates. DUJ came in and got hit hard to allow 1 run to score and then Cruz botched the ground ball which allowed 2 more runs. This quickly jumped the Cub’s lead to 6-1. Essentially the game was over. DUJ and Manny Banuelos had a total of 27 pitches, getting 2 outs, and giving up 5 runs.
Next Game: Tonight, Reds in Pittsburgh. The Pirates are giving away tickets for $10 for the final 6 home games. However, the Pirates are going to start Zack Josh Van Collins Meter, Greg Allen, Ben Gamel, Kevin Newman and the newly acquired Miguel Andujar for all 6 games. Cruz will be in the lineup for only 3 of those games. After all, what do you expect for 10 bucks?
Final Score: Pirates 6 Cubs 0
How The 2023 Pirates Did: In what could be called the most surprising performance of the year, Johan Oviedo pitched 7 innings of shutout ball, giving up only 3 hits, striking out 7, and SHOCKINGLY did not walk a batter. This from a man who was averaging a walk per inning over his first 14 innings of work. I didn’t even care if the bullpen blew the 6 run lead, I was so stunned with that performance. Hopefully, Oviedo find something, and this was no fluke. If he can get control of the stuff he has, he could be a top of the rotation starter. The rest of the 2023 Pirates did quite well racking up 6 runs, with some clutch hitting. They definitely made the most of their 7 hits and 2 walks. Rudolfo Castro came out of his funk getting 2 hits.
The Key Moment of The Game: In the bottom of the 5th, when it looked like the Pirates would only pick up a couple of runs on the Ji Hwan Bae double, Jack Suwinski had a big pinch hit 3 run home run with 2 outs, to put up the big crooked number. With this bullpen, I think everyone let out a big sigh of relief. It was a big plus, that relaxed everyone especially the bullpen, in this case Zack Thompson, who shut out the Cubs the rest of the way.
Next Game: This afternoon, Cubs in Pittsburgh. The Pirates continue to play the rejects, this time putting in Gamel, Newman, and Allen to start the game. I am still waiting to see that dream team take the field, the 2023 Pirates. I would love just to get a taste of what 2023 can be like. The Pirates will be pitching another potential young stud, in Luis Ortz. In 10.2 innings he has allowed only 1 earned run, 4 hits, 5 walks, while striking out 10. Please Lord, keep these arms healthy.
Final Score: Pirates 5 Cubs 6
How The 2023 Pirates Did: Bryan Reynolds continues to have a hot finish to the year. He got 2 hits, including his 25th home run, drove in 2 runs, and liked everybody else walked. There were 16 walks in the game. The Cubs got 3 runs in the top of the 6th and put one ball out of the infield in the entire inning. The Pirates walked in 2 runs for the 2nd time in the last 6 games. The game took 3 hours and 33 minutes to play as there were 356 pitches thrown. Now that’s a pitch count. Jack Suwinski had his first productive game in a long time hitting a home run and walking 3 times. Ji Hwan Bae made his major league debut for the Pirates last night and had a good game. He went 1 or 3, walked of course, and stole 2 bases. In 314 minor league games he has an on base percentage of .373. The highest on the Pirates right now is Bryan Reynolds at .344. In a nutshell the Pirates tried to lose the game and the Cubs gladly accepted.
Key Moment of The Game: When Will Crowe was brought into the game. In his last 2 appearances he has gotten 1 out, given up 8 earned runs, and walked 4. Don’t you think it might be time to shut him down for the season. The Pirates should just bring up the entire Indianapolis bullpen. Even if you have to designate for assignment most of the Pirate bullpen do you think anybody would pick them up.
Next Game: Tonight, Cubs in Pittsburgh. Speaking of walks, Johan Oviedo starts for the Pirates tonight. In 4 starts for the Pirates he has pitched 13.2 innings and walked 14. Fans attending tonight’s game will have plenty of time to get a beer, check their cell phones and not miss any “action” of the game. Baseball is making rule changes to speed up the game next year, but 356 pitches is 356 pitches. Even with a pitch clock, the game would have been over 3 hours long. Here is a radical rule change that would certainly speed up the game. Make 3 balls a walk instead of 4. Let’s start making pitchers throw strikes for God’s sake. Between batters begging and pitchers nibbling, the game has turned into watching Daniel Vogelbach bat every time. Even though a walk would still be boring, at least it would happen faster. It’s like being in line at McDonald’s, it’s much better when there are only 2 people ahead of you, instead of 6.
Final Score: Pirates 2 Cubs 3
How The 2023 Pirates Did: Only 6 started last night, as management finds ways of putting garbage on the field. I will never understand how players can develop if they do not play. Chavis, Hayes, and Castillo were all on the bench. Then Hayes pinch hit for Delay who was having a pretty good night at the plate with a double and a walk. Zack Josh Van Collins Meter was allowed to bat just before, and of course, struck out to go 1 for 12 with 6 strike outs and a walk, since being allowed to play. I am still not too sure that is not Josh Van Meter. He certainly plays like him. Bryan Reynolds had a great night at the plate going 3 for 3, driving in a run and walking twice. Unfortunately, he was about the only one who looked like he knew what to do with the bat. The rest of the Pirates went 0 for 8 with runners in scoring position. The Pirates got 6 walks to go along with 6 hits but left 10 men on base. Cruz, Castro and Suwinski went 0 for 14 with 5 strike outs. Mitch Keller pitched an ok game giving up only 2 runs in 6 innings work. He gave up 4 hits, walked 2 and struck out 7. The Pirates went down to their 7th straight defeat very quietly, even though they made it interesting in the bottom of the 9th.
Key Moment of The Game: The 2 out lightening the Cubs were able to do in the top of the 2nd. They opened the inning with a single. But then Keller was able to get 2 outs on a fly out and a strike out. Then the Cubs got a single to put runners on 1st and 2nd. Christopher Morel ripped a double into the left field corner, that Gamel went after like he had 2 bricks in each back pocket. He looks like this all the time in the outfield. Needless to say, the 2 runs scored easily, and the Cubs had a 2-0 lead, that they never relinquished.
Next Game: Tonight, Cubs in Pittsburgh. It would be nice to see at least 8 of the 2023 Pirates in the starting lineup. We just have 2 weeks to go, please let the kids play.
Final Score: Pirates 2 Yankees 14
How The 2023 Pirates Did: Ke’Bryan Hayes tackled Josh Donaldson in the endzone to give the Pirates their only 2 points of the game. The Pirate defense played well but the Yankees got 2 touchdowns, one by Oswaldo Cabrera and another one by Gleyber Torres. Harrison Bader added the extra points for a 14 to 2 victory. The Pirates got only 4 hits and pitched badly most of the game. This was about as lackluster as it could get. The Yankees scored 8 runs in the 8th against real pitchers. They will remain nameless to save their families the embarrassment. In the last 10 innings at Yankee Stadium the Pirates were outscored 19-2. The Pirates did not commit an error last night and the Yankees struck out more than they did. I came up with a more positive spin on this game than the Pirate web site could. Judge couldn’t even hit his 61st home run because Eric Stout walked him. I’m sorry, I did say I would not mention names.
Key Moment of The Game: The umpire said play ball. The Yankees hit another grand slam in the first and the game was over. The Pirates have petitioned the league office to see if they would be allowed to invoke the mercy rule. In the petition they stated that if they fell behind by 4 runs, they could stop the game after the 5th inning. They are afraid that their bullpen will be permanently destroyed both physically and mentally if they have to pitch in one more blow out game. They have been blown out 28 times this season, meaning they have lost by 5 or more runs 28 times. In those games they have given up 324 runs for an average of 11.5 runs per game. Some of the better defenses in the NFL have given up less points per game.
Next Game: Tonight, Cubs in Pittsburgh. The Pirates still find ways to get the rejects on the field. The latest, Zack Josh Van Collins Meter has kept up the garbage tradition of his predecessors. He is 1 for 9 with 4 K’s, the perfect Pirate. The good news is we are coming down the home stretch, with only 13 games to play. Could the Pirates lose all 13 remaining games, only The Shadow knows. He certainly will be managing to lose.
Final Score: Pirates 8 Yankees 9
How The 2023 Pirates Did: Will Crowe got bombed for 5 runs in the bottom of the 9th and should have been taken out of the game after the walk to Gleyber Torres. But Derek Shelton enjoys seeing players psychologically destroyed, just ask Cam Vieaux. Shelton claimed he lost a night’s sleep over letting Vieaux take a 56 pitch 8 run beating against the Brewers. Vieaux was allowed to throw 48 pitches before he got an out, possibly a Major League record. It was a shame because so many of the 2023 Pirates had such a good game. Bryan Reynolds had 4 hits with a home run and 2 RBI’s. Rudolfo Castro hit a 3-run home run in the 8th to give the Pirates an 8-4 lead. Jason Delay delivered a big 2 out hit to drive in 2 runs in the 6th. Luis Ortiz pitched another strong 5 innings. It was all for no avail as Derek Shelton just sat on his growing big ass and watched the Yankees score 5 runs in the 9th, ending with a Giancarlo Stanton rocket grand slam to win the game.
Key Moment of The Game: I thought the key moment was going be the many times that the Yankees had blown scoring opportunities. Instead, it was the bottom of the 9th and Will Crowe failing to get an out over 5 batters. A real heartbreaker for the 2023 Pirates who fell to 7-11.
Next Game: Tonight, Yankees in New York. The Pirates have 93 losses with only the A’s and the Nationals having more at 94 and 97 respectively. The number one draft pick his back in play again. The Pirate management always find a way to get the 29+ year old rejects into the game. The competition is tough right now but will get easier. Shelton will have to really sacrifice his sleep to continue to try and humiliate players. Even here in September the Pirates manage to put an infielder in right field and it cost them a run. I am sure that management thought it worked perfectly. Can the Pirates get the no. 1 pick, The Shadow knows it is possible.
Final Score: Pirates 3 Mets 7
How The 2023 Pirates Did: They struck out 20 times. Oneil Cruz hit a 3-run homer to tie the game in the 6th and had a double earlier against Jacob deGrom. That was the only positive thing that happened all day. They made 4 errors. The Met fielders only made 7 put outs. If there would have been a 5th game in the series the Mets were thinking of using 2 DH’s and only putting 6 men on the field to avoid injury. The bullpen failed in the 8th with Shelton making moves all over the place, but to no avail. The Pirate pitchers gave up 7 runs, 12 hits, walked 6, and hit a batter. They walked in another run with the bases loaded. The Mets had 23 base runners for the game. They left 13 men on base and were only 4 for 18 with runners in scoring position. This could have been a big blowout instead of a close game going into the 8th inning. This 4-game series was a disaster for the Pirates. The big city proved to be too big of a stage for the 2023 Pirates. They will be staying in New York through Wednesday. There is not much else to write.
The Key Moment of The Game: Derek Shelton woke up in the 8th and decided to make some moves. He should have just sat on his hands like he usually does late in the game, and maybe Robert Stephenson would have got out of the inning, unscathed.
Next Game: Tuesday night, Yankees in New York. A welcome day off today. There is a rumor that the Pirates are going to take batting practice using soft balls so they can feel a ball hitting a bat once in a while. The Pirates are taking strike outs and turning them into an art form. The 2023 Pirates dropped to 7-10.
Final Score: Pirates 1 Mets 5
How the 2023 Pirates Did: Rudolfo Castro had 3 hits, including a home run for the only Pirate run. Other than that, everybody else stunk. Cruz struck out every time at bat. Reynold struck out 3 times and in all, the Pirates struck out a dozen times. Meanwhile the pitchers gave up 8 walks and walked a run in with the bases loaded twice. The one swing for the Mets was a 3-run blast by Eduardo Escobar in the bottom of the 2nd with 2 out. The Mets runners were on base via a walk, what else, and the bloopiest double down the right field line. Even so, this was a horrible performance for the 2023 Pirates. It makes me want to curb my optimism for this team next year. The performance of the night was by Eric Stout. He came on in the bottom of the 6th with a runner on 1st and one out. He promptly walked the next 2 batters to load the bases. He struck out the next batter to give us hope. Then he walked the next batter on 4 pitches to force in a run. All in all, he threw 24 pitches and only 10 of those for strikes. Hopefully we will never see him in 2023. The 2023 Pirates fell to 7-9.
Key Moment of The Game: The Escobar homer was as big as it gets. There were 2 outs and it looked like Wilson may be getting out of the jam, but it was not to be. The Pirates only had 4 hits but manage to threaten to score a couple of times but could not get the big hit.
Next Game: This afternoon, Mets in New York. Jacob deGrom is going for the Mets today. The sweep is looking like a foregone conclusion. For the 3 games the Pirates have scored 5 runs on 13 hits and struck out 35 times. No hitter, anyone.