After last night’s late game collapse against the Miami Marlins, the Pittsburgh Pirates were in desperate need of a victory tonight in the second of three games between the two clubs at PNC Park. Fortunately for the Bucs, that is exactly what they got from yet another revamped version of their starting lineup.
The Pirates scored four runs in the first inning, which turned out to be enough on their way to a convincing and rather comfortable 7-3 victory over the Marlins tonight on the north shore.
Jeff Locke earned his third victory of the season. He looked shaky at times, but ended up going seven innings, giving up three runs on six hits with seven strikeouts. Tony Watson and Mark Melancon each pitched a scoreless inning of relief.
After falling behind 1-0 in the top of the first, the Pirates’ bats took control in the bottom half of the inning. Ike Davis crushed a ground rule double to deep left centerfield with the bases loaded, scoring Josh Harrison and Gregory Polanco, to give the Bucs the lead. Travis Snider’s ground out scored Russell Martin, and Jordy Mercer’s two out single scored Davis, capping the four run inning.
The Marlins responded in the second inning on a two run homerun by Christian Yelich, cutting the lead to 4-3. It was the last the Marlins would score on the night.
Pittsburgh broke the game open a bit in the seventh inning with three more runs. Martin’s single scored Harrison, and Gaby Sanchez’s huge two out, two run double scored Polanco and Martin to give the Bucs a 7-3 advantage, which would eventually be the final.
This was a big win for the Pirates. After the way they lost last night, they needed to respond with a convincing victory against an inferior opponent, and that’s exactly what they did tonight. They need to win this series and have a good home stand, as the schedule gets much tougher from here.
The Pirates and Marlins will face off for the last time this season tomorrow evening at PNC Park. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05pm.
Record vs. Marlins: 3-2
Record vs. N.L. East: 13-6
Record at Home: 35-22
Overall Record: 60-53
Let’s Go Bucs!