by Zane Heiple
|Photo by Getty Images|
After a night where the Pittsburgh Pirates pitching staff was shelled for eleven runs, Charlie Morton did all he could to help the Buccos defeat the Chicago Cubs tonight. Unfortunately the Pittsburgh offense was once again shut down, this time in a 1-0 defeat.
Morton rolled all night long as he would go seven innings allowing zero runs on seven hits, with seven K’s and two walks. The only jam that Chuck would be in all night came in the sixth when he allowed two singles and walked a batter to load the bases with two outs. He was able to end the threat by getting Marlon Byrd to ground out. Cubs starter Matt Garza was equally as good, also going seven innings striking out seven and walking two batters, but most importantly he did not give up a run.
The only run scored on the night came in the eighth inning when Pirates reliever Chris Resop gave up a solo home run to Starlin Castro. Castro has been killing the Pirates this series as he has gone 9-14 in three games and will have a chance to improve that with one game left.
The offense was absolutley dismal tonight, which has been the story since the All-Star break. As a team they collected four hits, two from Pedro Alvarez, and left seven men on base. The 3-4-5 hitters went a combined 1-10.
Coming into the home stand, the Buccos needed to beat the Cubs at least three times to keep pace with the Milwaukee Brewers. The opposite has happend and it looks like any hope for late season magic and a run at the post season has all but ended. Tonights loss drops the team to a game under .500 and 6.5 games back of the Brew Crew. They will have one more shot at the North Siders tomorrow night at PNC Park. First pitch is scheduled at 7:05pm with James McDonald going for Pittsburgh, while Chicago counters with Rodrigo Lopez.
Record vs. Cubs: 6-6
Record vs. N.L. Central: 25-19
Record at PNC Park: 26-28
Overall Record: 54-55
Let’s Go Bucs!!!