Offense Rebounds, Bucs Over .500 Again

Faced with the prospect of falling below .500, the Pirates offense responded with 12 singles and a double. Four of those singles were accompanied by an HBP and a BB to bring home four runs in the first inning against Micah Owings. That outbust would stake the Pirates to a lead they wouldn’t relinquish.

Ross Ohlendorf did a nice job of pitching out of trouble. He retired the Reds in order just once in his six innings. Yet the Reds only scored in one of those innings – in the fourth when Alex Gonzalez belted a three run jack.

The Pirates bullpen finished up the last three innings and were knicked for three runs. Matt Capps had to strike out Gonazalez with the bases loaded to end it.

The Good

Ohlendorf rolls on. I’ll take it.

Nate McLouth had three hits. Welcome back.

Sean Burnett has been scored up on just once in 12 appearances this year.

Pirate batters whiffed just once tonight. Believe it or not, you have to go back to 6/26/05 for the last time the Pirates struck out one time or fewer in a game. The victim in that game was Humberto Cota. He fell at the hands of Jason Isringhausen. In 2008 Cota was suspended for 50 games for violating baseball’s performance enhancing drug ban. He was invited to Spring Training by the Reds this year and was released in March.

The Bad

Matt Capps was battered in the 9th.

The Rest

Brandon Moss drove in a run in the third inning. Heading into the game he had just one RBI in 59 ABs. Fear not, the record in the division era for most at bats without an RBI by a non-pitcher is 86 by Mike Fischlin in 1978 for Houston (thank you Fischlin, if I recall correctly, employed an odd batting stance in which the bat was held straight back, parallel to the ground. It was reminiscent of the stance that Rod Carew used toward the end of his career. Though, Carew had a great deal more success. Here’s a great bar bet for you you: Mike Fischlin was the first ever client of Scott Boras. Boras was a failed minor leaguer (drafted in the third round in 1975 by KC). After quitting baseball and getting a degree in law, Boras was contacted by Fischlin (who knew him from his high school days – can’t recall if they were on the same team or just knew each other since they were both from Sacramento) about helping him negotiate a contract. The rest is history.

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