Today marked the final time that the Pittsburgh Pirates would take the field in 2017. They will head into the offseason with many questions after a 11-8 victory over the Washington Nationals. It was a game that took over four hours to play, had a slew of pitching changes, and saw everyone get some playing time. Washington was doing it to get players rest for the postseason, while Pittsburgh did it to get everyone in the stat column.
The Pirates would score five of their eleven runs in the first inning. Jordan Luplow would be hit by a pitch with the bases loaded to score the first run of the game. Max Moroff then came through with a double to clear the bases. Finally, Jacob Stallings hit a RBI single to left center for the fifth run of the inning. The Nationals would plate three runs in their half of the first and another run in the third to cut the Buccos lead to one.
Steven Brault would only throw two innings and allow four runs on six hits, to go with four strikeouts and four walks. He was followed up by Angel Sanchez who ended up with win after pitching the third and fourth innings. David Freese would drive in a run with a single to right center in the sixth inning. Pittsburgh would then tack on two more runs in the sixth. Stallings would bring home Moroff on a double to left. That was followed up by Starling Marte bringing in Stallings when he hit into a fielder’s choice.
Washington then cut that four-run lead in half with two runs of their own in the seventh. Johnny Barbato and Jack Leathersich combined to pitch the fifth, while Edgar Santana worked a scoreless sixth. Dovydas Neverauskas would be on the bump when the Nationals scored their two runs in the seventh. The Pirates would add three more runs in the eighth. Josh Bell drove in a run on a single to shallow center. Moroff would draw a bases loaded walk, and Stallings would bring in the final run of the season on an infield single.
Another season has come to an end and we are all left wondering what went wrong? Injuries, an underperforming pitching staff, a front office that won’t spend wisely, a third baseman stuck in South Korea, and a PED using left fielder are just a few places to start. The Buccos won three fewer games this year than last. It seems that they are a long way away from the 98 victories just two seasons ago.
Record vs. Nationals: 4-3
Record vs. N.L. East: 21-13
Record on the Road: 31-50
Overall Record: 75-87
Let’s Go Bucs!