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Game 55 Recap: Bucs Blow Early Seven Run Lead

Paul had four hits in the loss.

The Pirates offense took up where they left off. After scoring nine late runs the previous day, the offense put seven on the board in the first three innings. This time it was the Mets turn for a late inning comeback. The result was a 9-8 loss for the Pirates.

Mike Pelfrey was hit hard out of the shoot. Xavier Paul, Josh Harrison and Andrew McCutchen all singled, wtih Paul scoring on McCutchen’s single. Neil Walker contributed an RBI ground out. A two out single from Matt Diaz plated the third run of the inning.

The Pirates got three more runs in the next frame, with all the runs scoring with two outs. Paul singled and stole second. McCutchen singled him in and walker drilled a two run dinger. In the third, Dusty Brown walked and moved up when Paul Maholm singled. Paul’s third hit of the game scored Brown to make it 7-0.

But the lead wouldn’t hold. Maholm gave up a three run dinger to Carlos Beltran in the third inning.

The Mets tied it in the sixth. Beltran doubled and Jason Bay walked. Maholm got the next two hitters, but walked Nick Evans to load the bases with two outs. Ruben Tejada’s single score two runs to make it 7-5. Daniel Murphy’s single brought home Evans and Tejada moved to third on a gaff from Diaz on the play. Chris Resop releived Maholm and a passed ball allowed Tejada to score with the tying run.

After a quiet seventh, the Mets went ahead in the eighth. Ronny Paulino singled and Willie Harris was called on to pinch run for him. Chris Capuano was called on to drop down a sac bunt. But Jose Veras committed a balk, moving Harris to second and Capuano was called back with a 1-1 count in favor of Josh Thole. Suitably rattled, Veras uncorked a wild pitch that moved Harris to third. Thole walked and Tejada’s sac fly scored Harris with the go ahead run. Veras then walked three of the next four hitters – the last being Beltran – to force in another run and give New York a 9-7 lead.

The Pirates made it interesting in the ninth. Paul led off with a triple. Both Harrison and McCutchen were retired. Walker singled him in but Francisco Rodriguez retired Lyle Overbay to end it.

Maholm went 5-2/3 and gave up six earned runs (seven total) on eight hits. He struck out two and walked two. Pelfrey settled in after his rough start. He was charged with seven runs in five innings. He yielded ten hits and a walk and struck out three. Jason Isringhausen picked up the win in relief. Jose Veras was charged with the loss. K-Rod got his 16th save.

The Good
The offense collected 14 hits and eight runs.

Paul had four hits and Walker drove in four runs.

The Bad
Blowing a seven run lead.

Blowing a seven run lead with poor defense, miscues on the mound and walks.

The Rest
Maholm remains 3-3 against the Mets. Pelfrey is still 3-1 against Pittsburgh.

Four hits for Paul represents a career best.

This was the fifth time in his career that Walker drove in at least four runs. The last was 5/20/11 against Detroit when he drove in five.

Paul Maholm had two hits for the third time in his career and the first time since 2008.

McCutchen is hitting .324 in his last 17 games to pull his batting average up from .229 to .260.

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Tim Williams

Tim is the owner and editor in chief of Pirates Prospects. He started the site in January 2009, and turned it into his full time job during the 2011 season. Prior to starting Pirates Prospects, Tim worked with AccuScore.com, providing MLB, NHL, and NFL coverage to various national media outlets, including ESPN Insider, USA Today, Yahoo Sports, and the Wall Street Journal. He also writes the annual Prospect Guide, which is sold through the site. Tim lives in Bradenton, where he provides live coverage all year of Spring Training, mini camp, instructs, the Bradenton Marauders, and the GCL Pirates.

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