Pirates 5, Rays 4
The Pirates won on a walk-off error in the bottom of the 9th inning this afternoon in Bradenton. Pittsburgh had been leading 4-3 going into the top of the 9th, but a solo homer by Rays' John Jaso tied the score, and made reliever Chris Leroux the victim of a Blown Save. In the bottom of the inning, 2B Josh Rodriguez walked with one out. A ground out moved Rodriguez to second. CF Pedro Ciriaco grounded to third for what should have been the final out of the game, but Rays 3B Daniel Mayora made a wild throw to first, and the ball got away, Ciriaco had been off and running, and he rounded third and scored on the error to give the Pirates the win.
The Rays had scored in the 2nd inning on a solo homer, and also began the 5th inning with a solo homer, both off Pirates' starter Paul Maholm. After the homer in the 5th, Maholm gave up another run on a double an an RBI single. Joel Hanrahan pitched two hitless and scoreless innings, working around a fielding error by 1B Lyle Overbay in the 7th. Leroux was credited with the win.
The Pirates tied the score at 1-1 with a run in the bottom of the 3rd. 2B Neil Walker tripled to the wall in center field, then scored on CF Andrew McCutchen's ground out. When the Rays took a 3-1 lead in the top of the 5th, LF Jose Tabata got the Pirates a run closer with a solo homer in the bottom of the inning. The Pirates took a 4-3 lead in the 6th, when McCutchen led off with a walk. RF Matt Diaz grounded into a force out, replacing McCutchen at first. Diaz moved to third base on 3B Pedro Alvarez's line drive double, and both Diaz and Alvarez both scored on C Ryan Doumit's single lined into center field.
Steve Pearce was officially informed that he will begin the season on the Pirates' 25-man active roster. John Bowker, who had a pinch-hit single in the 7th inning today, is still on the bubble, and his fate will probably be decided by what the Pirates do about their catchers -- two or three catchers on the active roster?
The Indianapolis Indians had a day off today. They have 6 more spring training games, with their last next Saturday.
Other news: Former Pirate Nyjer Morgan was traded from the Washington Nationals to the Milwaukee Brewers today.
Pirates 5, Rays 4