Pittsburgh Pirates Vs. Florida Marlins: September 30-October 3, 2010

The Pirates entered the final series of the 2010 season with hopes of carrying over momentum from this year into the offseason. Their opponent this weekend was the Florida Marlins, another disappointing N.L. foe that, with a sweep of our Buccos, would finish the season at an even .500 mark.

Thursday, September 30: Mike Stanton had 3 hits and 5 RBI as the Marlins won a crazy game that featured 20 runs and 26 hits, out-hammering the Pirates 11-9 in game one of the series.

Pedro Alvarez went 4-5 with 1 HR and 5 RBI of his own, while Jose Tabata, Neil Walker, and Brandon Moss also added a pair of hits a piece. Unfortunately, the Marlins hit the ball just as well, if not better, than the Pirates. Starter Zach Duke ended his terrible season on Thursday, lasting only 4 innings while giving up 9 runs on 8 hits, inflating his already horrible ERA to 5.72 while losing his 15th game of the season.

Friday, October 1: Chan Ho Park set the all time record for wins by an Asian born pitcher on Friday, as the Pirates shut down the Marlin’s offense, beating the fish 5-1 in game two of the series.

Park pitched 3 scoreless innings in relief to earn the record-breaking win for the Pirates, striking out six of the nine batters he faced. Daniel McCutchen started for the Bucs, giving up only one run on five hits through his four innings. After Park’s great run, Evan Meek and Joel Hanrahan each pitched an inning of scoreless ball.

Pedro Alvarez had another nice night at the plate, going 2-4 with another homerun, raising his season average to .259. Andrew McCutchen, Neil Walker, and Ronny Cedeno had multi-hit evenings, while Chris Snyder hit a monster homerun to deep left field in the 5th inning, driving home Cedeno. With the win, the Pirates evened the series temporarily, and with two game remaining in the series, still had a chance to finish strong.

Saturday, October 2: As productive as the Pirates’ offense had been in the first two games of the season, it was basically non-existent on Saturday night, being shut out by the Marlins, 2-0.

Ronny Cedeno and John Bowker each had 2 hits to lead the offensive “attack,” but the Pirates never really threatened offensively.

The lack of offensive was certainly unfortunate, especially for starter Charlie Morton, who suffered the loss, despite only giving up 2 runs on 4 hits through his 6 innings of work. Nevertheless, Morton’s final season numbers include a dismal 2-12 record with a 7.57 ERA. The Marlins didn’t exactly hit the face off the ball either, totaling only five hits themselves. The difference was the 4th inning though, which included Mike Stanton’s RBI single, which would prove to be enough to defeat the Pirates.

Sunday, October 3: The Pirates dropped their 2nd straight game on Sunday, and ended their horrible season with a 5-2 loss to Dan Uggla and the Marlins.

Uggla went 3-3 with 1 HR and 3 RBI to finish his season his terrific fashion. The Pirates, on the other hand, lacked the offensive firepower for the second consecutive game, only tallying 4 hits, one of which was a solo homerun by Ronny Cedeno in the 2nd inning. Neither Neil Walker or Jose Tabata were able to finish the season above the .300 mark, and both were held hitless in their final game of the 2010 season.

Starter Brian Burres lost his 5th game of the season, lasting 5.2 innings while giving up 3 runs on 5 hits, but with the offense sputtering across the season’s finish line, there was no chance for Burres to avoid the loss.

So the Pirates concluded their record-extending 18th consecutive losing season at 57-105, worst in Major League Baseball. On top of that, the Bucs finished 17-64 away from home, matching the New York Mets of 1963 for the worst road record in a 162 game season. Obviously, the improvements of Neil Walker, Jose Tabata, and Pedro Alvarez, along with the continued improvements of Andrew McCutchen and Garrett Jones are inspiring and exciting; the real question that needs to be answered sooner rather than later is the future of the pitching staff. There are a number of issues that need to be dealt with in the Steel City, and throughout the next few weeks and months, we at Fans From The Stands will keep you up to date with all news and stories. Thanks so much for staying with us all season long, and be sure to continuously check back here throughout the offseason for all the latest Bucco news.

Final Record: 57-105

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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