by Zane Heiple
|Photo by AP|
The Pittsburgh Pirates looked awful tonight in their 15-5 defeat at the hands of the San Diego Padres. It was very reminiscent of the 2010 season where whatever could go wrong did go wrong. Bad pitching, poor defense, and an offense that could not produce when they needed a big hit were the factors that led to tonight’s blowout.
Early on the game looked like a tennis match as they teams traded runs and it even had that Pirates leading 4-3 going into the fourth inning. That’s when the defense and pitching fell apart. Pedro Alvarez made two bad attempts at ground balls which put runners in scoring position. Luis Martinez would hit a fly ball to center field that was just out of reach of a diving Andrew McCutchen. This led to a run that tied the game. A single by Cameron Maybin would load the bases, which is when pitcher Jeff Karstens would walk the go ahead run in. After some timely advice by pitching coach Ray Searage, Chase Headly would blast a grand slam to right center field putting the cap on a six run fourth and the game.
While this team has many problems after dropping their eighth straight game tonight, the biggest has to be Pedro. For a guy that was tabbed as the next Willie Stargell of the organization by media, he looks terrible on both sides of the ball. His .206 batting average is a joke for an overall number one pick and he looks clueless when steps into the batter’s box. While he does have a cannon for an arm, his throws tend to wild at times and he flops around for ground balls that are hit towards third. The Pirates front office needs to seriously work with him in the offseason. I don’t know if that means sending him somewhere during the winter to play or even starting him in AAA for the 2012 season, but it is getting to the point where if he doesn’t produce soon he will be added to the list of first round busts over these last 19 years of losing.
Record vs. Padres: 2-2
Record vs. N.L. West: 9-11
Record at PNC Park: 26-30
Overall Record: 54-57