Florida Marlins Vs. Pittsburgh Pirates: August 16-19, 2010

Following a pathetic 0-6 road trip, the Pirates returned to PNC Park for a 10 game homestand. While it was a nice change for the battlin’ Buccos to return to Pittsburgh, the three teams coming into town served as no easy match-up. First up were the Florida Marlins, a team that has been struggling this year, but, as in most cases, they haven’t been teetering as much as our beloved Buccos.

Monday, August 16: The Pirates’ bats were alive early, and starter James McDonald pitched another gem at PNC Park, leading the Buccos to a 7-1 in the first game of the 4-game set in Pittsburgh.

Pedro Alvarez went 2-4 with 3 RBI for the Pirates, while Andrew McCutchen and Chris Snyder each added 2 hits a piece in the winning effort. As for McDonald, he pitched 7 innings while only giving up 1 run on 3 hits. After a difficult road trip, this was a pleasant return to PNC Park.

Tuesday, August 17: Unfortunately, the hot Pirates-hitting couldn’t carry over to the second game of the series, as the Buccos were only able to manage 6 hits and couldn’t even break into the scoring column, losing to the Marlins 6-0.

Pedro Alvarez tallied 2 hits for the second straight night, while Jose Tabata added a pair of hits as well. The Pirates left a total of 6 runners on base, and, as is the case with many teams in Major League Baseball, the Marlins made them pay for it.

Zach Duke lasted 5.2 innings, giving up 5 runs on 9 hits, which clearly wasn’t solid enough for an offense that struggles to score on a consistent basis. Any momentum the Pirates gained in game 1 of the series was completely diminished on Tuesday.

Wednesday, August 18: The 3rd game of the series was a close-knit, highly competitive ballgame at PNC Park. This day also served as the birthday of FFTS co-host Chad Carlson, which, unfortunately, came on a day when the Pirates lost to the Marlins.

Ross Ohlendorf was the victim of another lackluster performance by an offense that couldn’t support him. Ross gave up 3 runs on only 4 hits through 8 innings. Dan Uggla was the hero for the Marlins, who went 2-3, including a HR in the 2nd inning.

Jose Tabata bumped into average up to an even .300 with a 3-hit evening for the Pirates, who tallied 7 hits as a team, but just couldn’t push enough runs across the plate for Ohlendorf to notch a win. Instead, poor Ross fell to 1-10 on the season, and the Pirates dropped their second straight game to the Marlins.

Thursday, August 19: Another close, tight game at PNC Park resulted in a Marlins’ narrow victory, as the Fish left Pittsburgh after taking 3 out of 4 games from our beloved Buccos.

All of the scoring for the Marlins came in the 6th inning, including a Gaby Sanchez 3-run homerun to deep center field, which gave Florida a 3-0 lead at the time.

Argenis Diaz was the surprise hitting star of the day for the Pirates, going 2-3, including an RBI ground rule double, scoring Chris Snyder in the 8th inning. Andrew McCutchen homered to start things off in the 9th inning, but unfortunately, the Pirates weren’t able to build on that momentum, and dropped another close contest.

So the Pirates dropped 3 games to the Marlins in a few different ways, including blown opportunities, leaving too many runners on base, and spoiling fantastic pitching performances by exhibiting non-existing offense. The Pirates are literally spiraling out of control, and it seems as though they literally have no idea how to close out ballgames and…well…win. It won’t get any easier as the New York Mets come into town for a 3-game weekend series.

Current Record: 40-81

And…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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