The Pittsburgh Pirates returned to PNC Park on Friday night to begin a three-game series with the Miami Marlins as the second half of the season began. A trade was made prior to the game as Daniel Vogelbach was sent to the New York Mets for pitcher Colin Holderman. As far as the game, Pittsburgh scored the first run of the night, but Miami scored eight unanswered to win 8-1.
Jason Delay scored the first run of the ballgame when he hit his first Major League home run, a solo shot, 388 ft. to left field. That would be the only run allowed by Marlins starter Braxton Garrett. He would give up just two hits, walk one, and strikeout seven over six innings of work. Relief pitchers Steven Okert, Dylan Floro, and Anthony Bass did not allow a hit and combined for four strikeouts over the final three innings.
Pirates starter Zach Thompson was hit hard and often tonight. He allowed seven runs on nine hits, with two walks and two strikeouts. Dillon Peters worked the next 2.2 innings, allowing one run on three hits. The ninth belonged to Chris Stratton and he would allow one hit and strikeout one batter during that time on the mound.
The Marlins offense began to roll in the fourth inning. It started when Miguel Rojas doubled to left to tie the game at one. Avisail Garcia then scored on a wild pitch to give them the lead. A groundout by Nick Fortes allowed Rojas to score. The final run of the inning came in on a Joey Wendle single to right center.
Miami would bring in three more runs during the sixth inning. Fortes plated two runs with a single to right center. He then came in to score when Wendle doubled to left. The eighth and final Marlins run of the night came in the seventh on a solo home run by Garcia.
The was an ugly way to start the second half of the season in front of the home crowd. Pittsburgh was outhit tonight 13-2. The Vogelbach trade feels like sign of things to come, as I expect many of the veterans on the team to be moved prior to the deadline on August 2. With this team still a couple of years away from contending, those trades will hopefully bring returns that help lead the Pirates back to the postseason.
Record vs. Marlins: 2-3
Record vs. N.L. East: 6-10
Record at Home: 20-24
Overall Record: 39-55
Let’s Go Bucs!