I’d like to think the offense will get better. I’d like to think the Pirates can stay in it. A game like this – plus 18 years of futility – are draining the optimism from me. Yet the Bucs are one game out of first and that’s really more than I could’ve hoped for back in March. St. Louis used a five run fifth to beat up on Kevin Correia and the Pirates. They took the second game of the weekend set 9-1.
Correia’s woes at home continued. St. Louis jumped out in front 2-0 in the second inning. Matt Holliday doubled and Lance Berkman walked. One out later Yadier Molina and Daniel Descalso hit back-to-back run scoring singles.
The Pirates would cut that lead in half in the bottom of the second. Matt Diaz doubled and moved up on a passed ball. A single from Brandon Wood off St. Louis starter Jaime Garcia scored Diaz. The Pirates would get no closer.
The fateful inning started off poorly and got worse. Skip Schumaker, Jon Jay and Albert Pujols hit consecutive singles to start the inning and plate one run. One out later Lance Berkman put one over the fence for a three run homer. Molina would later hit a solo homer to make it 7-1.
St. Louis tacked on two runs in the ninth. Jose Veras walked both Albert Pujols and Nick Punto. They would score on RBI at bats from David Freese and Gerald Laird to make the final 9-1.
Garcia cruised and was aided by a trio of double plays from the Pirates. He wouldn’t give up two hits in the same inning again until he departed with one gone in the eighth after allowing singles to Michael McKenry and Chase D’Arnaud. Jason Motte relieved and got two straight outs to strand the runners. P.J. Walters pitched a perfect ninth to end it.
Correia was pulled after Molina’s dinger in the fifth. He went 4-2/3 and gave up seven runs. He gave up eight hits and three walks. Garcia gave up a single run in 7-1/3 innings. He allowed eight hits and walk. He whiffed five.
D’Arnaud and Diaz each had two hits.
Tony Watson tossed three innings of scoreless relief.
Correia and Veras were both hit hard.
Correia is 2-3 against St. Louis. Garcia is now 1-1 against Pittsburgh.
Another sellout crowd was on hand.
Pittsburgh is 4-4 since the All-Star break and is averaging just three runs per game.
Bucs have gone six straight games without a dinger. Their longest streak on the year is seven games from 6/17 to 6/24.