Errors And Miscues Doom Pirates In 4-2 Loss To Red Sox

By Chad Carlson
Photo Credit: Jared Wickerham/Getty Images
The Pirates gave up two runs without surrendering a hit in the seventh inning, which proved to be the difference this afternoon at PNC Park in a Red Sox 4-2 victory in the final game of the two teams’ three-game set.
Tim Wood and Daniel Moskos each walked a batter to start the seventh inning, and both would eventually come around to score to give the Sox the 4-2 lead, which would eventually be the final score.  Despite a nice job by Chris Resop to clean things up in the inning, the damage was already done, and the Pirates couldn’t dig their way out of trouble in the remaining innings.
James McDonald made the start for the Buccos, and, despite a few trouble innings, pitched a solid game, once again keeping his team in the game.  J-Mac gave up two runs on five hits through his six innings of work, while walking two and striking out five.  McDonald’s on-mound opponent, Andrew Miller, earned his first victory of the season, going six innings while giving up two runs on five hits. 
This certainly wasn’t the cleanest of outings for either team, as they combined for six errors on the afternoon, including four from the Pirates.  Routine ground balls and fly balls were dropped, mishandled, muffed, and thrown away on multiple occasions, which ultimately resulted in a number of runs today. 
After the Red Sox took an early 1-0 lead, the Buccos responded in the fourth inning on Ronny Cedeno’s sacrifice fly to shallow center field, allowing Neil Walker to tag and score from third base. 
The sixth inning proved to be one of missed opportunities for the Pirates.  After loading the bases with no outs, Andrew McCutchen smashed an RBI single to left field, scoring McDonald from third.  Unfortunately, Garrett Jones was mistakenly waved around third base on the play, and after he rounded the base, was caught in no man’s land and tagged out by third baseman Kevin Youkilis.  The Pirates wouldn’t score another run, and that seemed to swing momentum in Boston’s favor.
The Red Sox tied the game in the sixth inning on Josh Reddick’s sacrifice fly to left center, scoring Youkilis from third.  After the leadoff walks in the seventh by Wood and Moskos, Dustin Pedroia and Youkilis sacrificed runs home to give the Sox the lead.
Jose Tabata was removed from the game after injuring his left quad in the first inning while beating out Youkilis’s throw to first base.  He will be evaluated tomorrow.
This was a difficult loss for the Pirates.  They once again played the Red Sox tough throughout the game, but unfortunately, they made way too many mistakes for them to win this one.  Boston came in with the best offense in baseball, and the Pirates gave them too many opportunities to score runs.  As a team, the Buccos’ pitchers issued six walks, and they gave up two runs in the seventh inning without surrendering a single hit.  The Red Sox are too good of a team to give them these chances.
Still, while a sour end to the weekend, it has been a more than successful series for the Pirates.  Coming into this three-game set, many were hoping to salvage a game.  Instead, we won the series from the best team in the American League.  While the Buccos certainly didn’t play their best baseball this weekend, they made quite a statement to the Red Sox, the rest of the league, and to the fans. 
The Buccos now sit at 39-38, one game over .500 and have concluded a successful 4-2 home stand.  They now take to the road for a three game set with the Toronto Blue Jays on Tuesday to complete their 2011 interleague play schedule. 
Record Vs. Red Sox: 2-1
Record Vs. A.L. East: 4-2
Interleague Play Record: 6-6
Record At Home: 19-20
Overall Record: 39-38
As Always…
Let’s Go Bucs!

Chad Carlson

Co-Editor of Fans From The Stands, Pirates' Beat Writer For Armchair Report, Sports writer for AMN, SteelTownRock And Music City Encore Editor

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