Final score: Cincinnati 9, Pittsburgh 7. If you’re reading the log after the conclusion of the game, you’re going to want to start from the bottom and scroll to the top. I’ll provide a recap later tonight.
3:39: Javy Guzman is thrown out at the plate. Fitting end to the game; sounded as if Javy had a terrible performance.
3:38: I think Edwards reached, Davis up to bat.
3:37: “Cota erased on the fielder’s choice that went 3-6.” Edwards up. Reds 9, Pirates 6, down to our last out.
3:35: Buttler is battling, for whatever that’s worth. Started off 0-2, came back to 2-2, then looked at strike three. One out, with lazy Javy Guzman stepping to the dish.
3:32: Edwards walked. Not sure if Todd Coffey’s still pitching or not. Cota’s at the plate now. Ooomberto Cota. “That was ugly from the start,” as Votto booted a ball to first base. Sacks are juiced on little league baseball. Vic Buttler at bat.
3:31: Mike Edwards is up, 2-0 count right now. Hope he doesn’t get more than 100 AB this year, with them all coming for Indy.
3:30: Ryan reaches on an infield single. That makes him 2 for 2 on the day. Greg is working on his to-do list live on the air. I like Lanny, Blass and Walk but can’t stand these two.
3:28: Ryan to lead off. “A left-handed bat off the bench is going to be very valuable, Michael Ryan swings the bat from the left side.” Sounds like Greg wants him to make the team.
BOTTOM OF THE NINTH
3:27: Rajai Davis records the third out on a fly ball to center. Grybowski gave you everything you could ask for, I guess.
3:25: Grounder to Walker, 5-3 on the putout. Sounded routine from Greg’s PBP. The throw was shaky but acceptable.
3:24: Kevin Grybowski in to pitch. According to Rock, “pretty good numbers there for the Braves those first couple of years, ’03-’04.” Just struck out Wise.
TOP OF THE NINTH
3:21: Denorfia tracks down a Walker fly ball to left-center for the third out. Heading to the ninth, it’s Reds 9, Pirates 5.
3:20: Walker seems comfortable at third, according to Wehner and Brown. Not just mechanically, but mentally as well.
3:19: Two outs. Davis at third. Yurendell de Caster thrown out at second on a FC, Garabito to first. Neil Walker up to bat for the second time.
3:17: Guzman caught napping on a fielder’s choice play as the infielder threw to second on a Rajai Davis grounder. Kid isn’t making a good impression. Sloppy baseball now, as I think there was just another error. Can’t really tell, Wehner’s play by play leaves something to be desired.
3:16: Todd Coffey’s on for the Reds. Guzman grounded to the mound, but Coffey threw the ball away. Javy to second. Not an impressive debut. Apparently he’s put on 15-20 pounds in the off-season. Oops.
BOTTOM OF THE EIGHTH
3:14: I think Rogers struck out the last batter he faced.
3:12: Hits are 12-12. Reds hit 5 HR, Bucs 3 (McCutchen, Matos, Matos).
3:12: Rogers walked Votto. There’s an AB I actually would’ve liked to see.
3:10: Don’t forget to buy your tickets for the 2007 season this Saturday! Actually, if you down to the park, you can get a tour (including the clubhouse) apparently. They’re really hyping Big & Rich on July 4th.
3:08: Entirely too many references are being made to the Dave Littlefield show. Sorry that I’m not paying close attention to the game, I haven’t heard of 75% of these Reds.
3:06: Javy Guzman booted a ball up the middle that was credited as a single. After Brian Bixler, Guzman’s our next shortstop in the minors now that Lillibridge is gone.
3:04: Brian Rogers, acquired in the Sean Casey deadline deal, is on for the Bucs. He forced to Chad Moeller to pop to Neil Walker. Wehner makes an easy pop to Walker sound like a Web Gem.
TOP OF THE EIGHTH
3:02: Cliff’s Notes version of the bottom half: Cormier/Moeller in as Cincy’s battery. Neil Walker led off, worked the count before grounding out to second. Michael Ryan (one of the many native Pittsburghers–Walker, Sharpless, Kelly, Edwards–on the team) doubled. Brown and Wehner shared an awkward moment discussing Kelly’s marrying of Walker’s sister. Cota doubled in Ryan.
BOTTOM OF THE SEVENTH
3:01: Sorry, folks, had some Internet issues. Simpson gave up a blast to Josh Hamilton that cleared the batter’s eye in CF.
2:47: Bubba Crosby just doubled. Wise is pinch hitting for Saarloos.
2:46: It sounds as if Wilbur’s intrigued by Simpson if you read today’s roundtable.
2:45: Allan Simpson is in, pitching to Joey “Vito,” the Reds’ top prospect whose name is getting botched left and right. Ryan and Buttler are in the outfield now. Votto’s retired on a grounder to the infield.
TOP OF THE SEVENTH
2:44: Computer’s on the fritz, I think Garabito made the last out of the inning. No matter what, Saarloos went 1-2-3.
2:40: Saarloos still pitching, gets Rajai on another weak pop-up (this one didn’t drop in). Apparently McCutchen started the game in center and shifted over once Davis entered the game. Andrew grounds out to the middle infield (Machado), now 2 for 4.
BOTTOM OF THE SIXTH
2:36: It sounds like Grabow is doing much better than Torres. A soft grounder to Edwards for out number two. There’s a beer vendor going absolutely crazy at McKechnie, reminds me of TC in Pittsburgh. Machado lines out to Edwards to end the inning. All told, not a bad IP by Grabow. Doubt that HR would’ve left PNC.
2:36: John Wehner is clearly reading a scouting report word for word on Jeff Keppinger. “You might remember Keppinger as a former Pirates’ minor leaguer, a part of the Kris Benson trade.”
2:34: Greg Brown is entirely too perky. Grabow/Cota in. Edwards to first base, Neil Walker to third. One pitch, one out (a fly ball to Rajai Davis in center). Another wind-aided homer, Jeff Keppinger goes deep. Reds 7, Pirates 4.
TOP OF THE SIXTH
2:31: Reds get out of the inning, a weak grounder to Votto at first. Brown and Wehner enter the booth next. I’m going to go get a cold beverage.
2:30: Jose retired, 4-3. Ronny to third. Jose K. now up. Hernandez flies out to Hamilton, whose throw to the plate wasn’t impressive according to Steve. Obviously my grandma could throw out Ronny trying to tag up.
2:29: Saarloos pitching for Cincy now. Paulino reaches on a two-base error (Denorfia booted a fly ball.) Bautista is up.
BOTTOM OF THE FIFTH
2:27: Salomon gets pinch hitter Chris Denorfia. After four and a half, it’s Reds 6, Bucs 4.
2:26: Josh Hamilton gets a base knock, squeezing one in between Garabito and Hernandez on the right side of the infield. [Insert joke here] “There is activity in the Pirates’ bullpen.”
2:25: For those of you scoring at home: Blass says “I have it down as three legitimate home runs and three wind-aided.”
2:24: Bellhorn goes deep, that’s two homers and 4 ER against Torres. Here comes the BOOM?
2:23: We get Lanny and Steve for another half inning. Greg and Rock get the last four, not the last 4.5.
2:22: Votto walks. Sully isn’t doing that hot. Bubba Crosby flies out to Aguila, two outs. Bellhorn up, batting from the other side of the plate now.
2:21: Joey Votto gets his first AB. Lanny’s blowing his name, too. He’s a guy that’s on my Lefty McThump list, but it’d likely take one of the Big Four to get him.
2:20: Too late. Phillips HR. “That ball is out of everywhere,” says Blass, “that ball is just CRUSHED.”
2:19: Salomon isn’t dominating. Keppinger out, Freel reaches. Phillips at bat. Let Freel try to steal, I say, and find out if Ronny can gun him down.
2:17: Garabito and Guzman are the new middle infielders. Salomon’s on the hill.
TOP OF THE FIFTH
2:14: Aguila grounds out, 3-1. Bucs up 4-2 heading into the fifth. I think this is the last half inning for Lanny and Steve; Brown and Rock will take us the rest of the way.
2:13: Freddy’s still batting. Bucs winning 4-2. Blass is man-crushing on Matos. Freddy strikes out. Not a hot start from the batting champ. Aguila coming to the plate.
2:11: Jack Wilson singles (and reaches second on an error by Freel in CF), Davis scores. Ryan Freel should be an infielder.
2:10: McCutchen finally makes an out. He’s human after all. 6-3, but still made it a close play according to Lanny. Hustle counts for something.
2:09: Rajai pops a tweener into short right. He is the fastest human being I’ve ever seen. SB. David Ross didn’t have a chance.
2:08: Matos is 2 for 2 with two bombs. Luis Matos for MVP. (The wind REALLY must be blowing out.)
2:06: Lanny’s pronouncing Luis’ last name properly now. Matos leads off, then Rajai Davis to pinch hit for Gorzelanny.
BOTTOM OF THE FOURTH
2:04: Ross grounds out to Bautista. “At the end of three and a half, it’s the Pirates 2, the Reds 2.”
2:01: Crosby to second, two outs. Who knows what Bellhorn did? Hamilton grounded out to Freddy at second. Alex Gonzalez is up. I’m surprised Lanny didn’t mention that he’s a slick fielder. A-Gon singles to center, Crosby scores, 2-2. David Ross is up.
2:00: Paused for station identification for the first time. I miss KDKA.
1:58: Meaningless stat of the day: The Bucs were 15-17-1 last ST. Lanny’s talking about the new rules.
1:56: Dunn walks. Bubba Crosby pinch runs. You might be a redneck if you think that the last words of the Star-Spangled Banner are “Play ball!” Bellhorn is up.
1:55: Dunn leading off against Gorzelanny. This is a matchup that interests me.
TOP OF THE FOURTH
1:54: I was checking e-mail, sorry. Wilson got out of the inning. I really need a TV and a box score. Live blogging from the radio without a scorecard is tough.
1:50: Paulino made an out, I wasn’t paying close enough attention. Bautista’s up.
1:47: Wasn’t Macchiato a shortstop we had a few years back? More coffee talk from Blass. Aguila swipes second off the Wilson/Ross battery.
1:47: Aguila lines Paul Wilson’s first pitch into the outfield for a single. Jeff Keppinger is in the game now, playing 3rd for the Reds.
BOTTOM OF THE THIRD
1:44: Encarn grounds out to Jack to end the inning. Lanny and Steve are talking about coffee. I’m wishing the game was on MLB.TV. Pirates 2, Reds 1.
1:43: Steve Blass made a country music joke. “Big & Rich–is that Bob Walk?” Phillips was out on a grounder, Freel took third on a stolen base (and a Gorzo WP or Paulino PB, depending on who you believe).
1:41 p.m.: Is it ma-TOS or MAY-tos? I think Lanny’s butchering the pronunciation.
1:39 p.m.: Gorzo is on the mound now, faced a pinch hitter to lead off the frame. Bautista’s throw was offline, but Jose K.’s quick feet at first saved an error. Freel doubled. Runner on second, one out.
TOP OF THE THIRD
1:39 p.m.: The most complete starting lineups I can put together (for now):
1:37 p.m.: Freddy flies out with the bases loaded. Warning track power. Bench the bum.
1:34 p.m.: Cutch is 2 for 2 after a double into the gap. If Nady can’t go, how about Andrew for the first few weeks of the season? Nah…well, maybe?
1:32 p.m.: Matos goes yard too. Wind is REALLY blowing out. Zach Duke’s batting for himself, and manages a single. Gorzelanny’s coming in for the third inning.
1:31 p.m.: Luis Matos is batting eighth, who knows what the OF configuration is (Aguila, McCutchen, Matos?) Lanny is mocking a vendor who had off-season knee surgery.
1:30 p.m.: Bautista leads off, he’s at third I suppose. Flies out to the warning track in left. Big Donkey tracks it down. Jose K. up next.
BOTTOM OF THE SECOND
1:27 p.m.: Grounder to third, Bautista scoops it with ease. I thought Freddy was playing third? We’ll see who bats in the bottom half of the second. After one and a half, Pirates 1, Reds 1.
1:26 p.m.: Jack’s first error of the year. Gonzalez reaches. Now we’ll blame the turf at McKechnie field.
1:25 p.m.: Jose K. rounds up a Josh Hamilton grounder to first. Guess LaRoche has the day off. Lanny called Ronny lazy err…tired at the end of last year. Freudian slip?
1:24 p.m.: Duke strikes out Bellhorn, and Blass explains how the windy day will help his breaking ball. I’m thinking that Mark Bellhorn’s not a solid major leaguer…
1:22 p.m.: Dunn takes Duke deep. Lanny blames the wind. Steve doesn’t. 1-1.
TOP OF THE SECOND
1:21 p.m.: The incomplete batting orders (blame the 104.7 Web feed):
1:20 p.m.: Ronny flies out to right. 1 R, 3 H, 0 E. Pirates 1, Reds 0.
1:19 p.m.: Aguila singles to right center on a 1-1 pitch; Ronny’s up now. We won’t talk about the batting order quite yet.
1:18 p.m.: Freddy grounds into an “easy” double play. Aguila up next.
1:17 p.m.: Live stream is back up, I think. Jack worked Milton to a 3-2 count, then beat out an infield single to shortstop. By the way, wind’s blowing out at McKechnie. Not sure McCutchen got all of his dinger, but it’s nice nonetheless.
1:13 p.m.: McCutchen is leading off for the Bucs. Homer. I kid you not. Homers on a 1-1 pitch and the Bucs are up 1-0. What a way to start.
BOTTOM OF THE FIRST
1:12 p.m.: Seems as if it’s only an online issue, as I cranked up a “real” radio and the game’s on. No runs, no hits, no errors, one walk and one caught stealing in the top of the first. Pirates up to bat after the commerical.
TOP OF THE FIRST
1:11 p.m.: I am NOT pleased.
1:07 p.m.: Dead air on 104.7 after typical pre-game patriotic music (“America the beautiful”), further convincing me that I’d rather have KDKA. If I’m the only one that can’t hear the game, leave me a comment.
1:03 p.m.: I think 104.7 is having some technical difficulties. I just dropped the game, and there’s an anti-drug commerical on in its stead. Everyone needs Spring Training.
1:01 p.m.: “Hello friends, and a very pleasant good afternoon.” Now THAT gets my blood pumping.
1:00 p.m.: The first Pirates promo I’ve heard on 104.7. Adrenaline flowing? Not quite yet.
12:57 p.m.: To keep it near the top of the page: Listen to 104.7 here by clicking the “Listen Live” link on the banner.
12:55 p.m.: (Other than Griffey in the OF and Conine/Hatteberg at 1B, that’s Cincinnati’s Opening Day lineup.)
12:49 p.m.: According to Redleg Nation, here’s the Reds’ starting nine:
12:40 p.m.: Half an hour before game time, and Rush Limbaugh is ranting about John McCain on 104.7. I’d rather listen to John Wehner.
12:35 p.m.: Dejan lets us know who we can blame for this 104.7 business in this P-G link. The guy responsible for “We Will” and the move from KDKA quit today. Good riddance.
5:10 a.m.: Red Reporter has a game thread up, too.
I’ll be updating this post regularly throughout the afternoon as the Pirates open their Grapefruit League schedule against the Cincinnati Reds at McKechnie Field. First pitch is scheduled for 1:05 p.m.; I’ll probably be here by quarter ’til one.
Unfortunately, MLB.TV isn’t carrying the game (as of yet), so I’ll be forced to try out FM NewsTalk 104.7, the Pirates’ new radio home. You can find a link to today’s live feed here. You should also be able to utilize MLB.com’s Scoreboard feature.