Monday, August 23, 2010

Sometimes We Win

8-22-10: vs. the New York Mets

It's interesting how these things work. Out of the three games played against the Mets, Jeff Karstens and James McDonald turned in uncharacteristically- bad starts. And Zach Duke, the starting pitcher who has struggled the most this season without being optioned, pitches fantastically and gets a win.
I covered a lot of this game in my previous post, but I will reiterate that Zach Duke's first inning was awful. Just look at the expression on his face.

Witness the look of fear in his eyes as Ryan Doumit approaches him.
Meanwhile, Johan Santana started for the Mets. I was expecting a one-hitter shutout, as was the vast majority of the crowd in attendance.
However, fate smiled on the Pirates today. We didn't do a lot against Santana, but we did enough to beat him by one run.
Doumit deciding who in the first couple rows deserves the ball. More specifically, he is trying to figure out how to get the ball to a Pirates fan when the whole ballpark was rotten with Mets supporters.
Ronny Cedeno takes flight.
Zach Duke did a horrendous job trying to sacrifice punt Cedeno to second. Here we see Garcia telling him not to reach first base.
Duke did reach first, however, thereby forcing Cedeno to second. Cedeno was tagged out.
Zach Duke clearly pleased by a pop-up.

Jose Tabata continued to demonstrate his prowess with the bat; he got a solo home run that ultimately gave the Pirates the win.
Johan Santana was still a tough nut to crack, as Walker's reaction to a strikeout indicates.
Milledge makes a crucial catch.
Milledge is pleased.
Tabata rounds the bases.

Jose Reyes strikes out.

Alvarez on first. It was a significant accomplishment for him to get a hit against this pitcher.

Another beautiful aspect of this game was the bullpen's ability to shut the door and hold the Mets to one run. It was a high-pressure situation, especially for Meek who has been struggling as of late.

Hanrahan earned the save, but not without significant drama. Quite a few well-hit balls went just foul; a few inches towards center and the outcome could have been quite different.

Chris Carter hit a grounder to third to end the game.

And there was celebration.
The requisite bro hug.

To paraphrase Dejan Kovacevic, one upside to being over 40 games under .500 is that an occasional win becomes significantly more enjoyable. It takes very little to keep the embers glowing.

No comments:

Post a Comment