Sanchez Ejected in 1st, Walker Hurt as Pirates Lose 9-1

If Jonathan Sanchez has made his final appearance with the Pittsburgh Pirates, what a way to go out. Home run, home run, single, hit by pitch, ejection. Ejecting Jonathan Sanchez because you think he was throwing at a batter’s head on purpose is like yelling at a cloud for raining on you. Occupational hazard, friends. But ejected he was for hitting Allen Craig without a warning. Manager Clint Hurdle bursted from the dugout...

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Pirates Keep Rolling with 6-4 Win Over Phillies

The Pirates’ offense jumped on starter Cliff Lee and the Phillies’ relievers for 14 hits for a 6-4 win Thursday afternoon. Add in the fact that manager Clint Hurdle made far more of the right moves than his counterpart Charlie Manuel, and the Bucs wrapped a key four-game series win. This is not a game the Pirates would have won last April. They didn’t even reach 14 hits in a game last year until June 27. Posting 10...

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Pirates Notebook: First-Pitch Strikes Key for Rodriguez

Wandy Rodriguez returned from injury Friday for the Pittsburgh Pirates and promptly mowed down the hottest team in baseball. Rodriguez was sharp from the┬ábeginning and allowed just one hit in seven innings and combined with Mark Melancon and Vin Mazzarro to face the minimum of 27 batters in the Pirates’ 6-0 win against the Braves at PNC Park. Of the 21 batters Rodriguez faced, he either threw a first-pitch strike or got the...

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Pirates Notebook: Top of the Lineup Heating Up

Wins are for the most part an antiquated statistic in baseball, but sometimes a win can carry a bit of significance. A.J. Burnett got his first one of the 2013 campaign Wednesday night at PNC Park, but that was not what people will remember about the game. Burnett not only got strikeout No. 2,000 for his career, he flirted with perfection and took a no-hitter into the seventh inning before allowing a two-out double to Carlos...

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A.J. Burnett: Anatomy of a One-Hitter

So many events have to go right for a no-hitter to happen. We sometimes lose sight of that, living in this Golden Age of 23 no-hitters in the last six years. Even with no-hitters becoming almost as common an occurrence as Clint Barmes home runs, they still require a potent combination of talent and good fortune to come true (you know, like a Clint Barmes home run). When looking at A.J. Burnett taking a perfect game into the 6th inning...

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