Wednesday, June 9, 2010

6-4-10: vs. the Giants

As I write this, the Pirates have just lost to the Nationals 7-5 in the MLB debut of Brad Lincoln and Jose Tabata. Tabata went 2-4, and Lincoln gave up 7 hits and 2 walks in 6 innings. And got two hits! Sure, the defense blew it and Tabata left the game with a hamstring sprain, but the pleasure of seeing our first three batters get on base was exquisite. A glimpse into the future, I like to think.

Yes, they were all LOB. But when it comes to the Pirates, I adopt an optimistic world view.

The pictures today are from our 6-4 loss to the Giants this past friday after a three-hour rain delay. It is also worth noting that the Pirates were leading 4-0 at one point. It cannot be denied: this game was hard to love.

This game is the first time Freddy Sanchez returned to PNC Park since being traded to the Giants. He also had a monster series; I guess it's safe to say the shoulder surgery was successful. Here, Andy Laroche and Garrett Jones share a moment.
Jeff Karstens speaking with Huntington.
And perhaps seeing me take his picture. Whatever, public eye and all that.
Freddy getting a lead off first.

Successful pitch evasion.
Wunderkind Neil Walker speaks with Beasley.

This was bizarre. Doumit heads for third....
And quickly decides against it.
Andy Laroche's moustache in rare form.
The saddest aspect of this game was Zach Duke's performance. He started great and proceeded to lose his control. This is the inverse of his struggles up to this point, and I really don't know what to make of it. When 2009 Zach Duke had his first good season in two years, it was easy to attribute his success to the hiring of Joe Kerrigan as new pitching coach and a return to the mechanics that got him to the majors in the first place. His regression doesn't make sense to me.

This picture shows Duke during a rare happy moment in this game: he got a run!
Maybe the high five was too high-impact?
McCutchen running. The only thing faster are the baseballs.

Walker takes second while Sanchez summons Aki Iwamura.

Duke shows his feelings, and they aren't pretty.
Walker in some kind of zone.
Evan Meek fixing his gaze on the ball before a pitch. He now leads relief pitchers in ERA.

Andy Laroche and Sanchez making conversation.
A rare sight: Iwamura on second base as a runner.
I love watching Brendan Donnelly pitch. For a man in his late thirties, his execution is amazingly violent. Pictures don't do it justice, but this one comes close.

Hanrahan's pitching face.
Only a two-run difference, so the game could have been much worse. After a three-hour rain delay you want to see a win, but at least you didn't see a shutout.

Tomorrow night I head to Altoona to see the Curve, who lead all of the minors in wins. Oh yes there will be pictures.

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