The Pittsburgh Pirates started the month of July winning three of four games from the Philadelphia Phillies at PNC Park. After the short home stand the Buccos hit the road for a six game road trip, starting off with three in Houston. The Pirates were swept by the Astros in a three game series back in late April.
Tuesday, July 6: On this night Astros pitcher Wandy Rodriguez was on as he would strike out 10 Pirates in a 6-2 win over the Buccos. This win would also snap a three game losing streak and continue the Pirates road woes. The Astros also got some big hits in the form of home runs by Carlos Lee and Lance Berkman. Pirate’s pitcher Brad Lincoln got off to a bad start as he gave up two runs in the first. The Pirates first run of the night would come in the fourth when Andrew McCutchen would score on a Ryan Doumit single. The second run would come on a Garrett Jones single that scored Neil Walker in the eighth inning. The Astros would go on to score three in the third and one in the seventh to round out their six runs on the night. The loss would drop Lincoln to 1-3 with a 5.25 ERA.
Wednesday, July 7: The long ball would once again bring the Buccos to defeat and the Astros would hit four home runs in a 6-3 win. Carlos Lee and Lance Berkman would go deep again for the second night in a row. They would be joined by homers from Jeff Keppinger and Hunter Pence who would both hit solo shots. Pirate’s starter Daniel McCutchen would allow three of the four home runs in five innings of work. With his record dropping to 1-4 he was optioned to Triple-A Indianapolis to make room on the roster for recently required reliever Sean Gallagher. For the second night in a row, the Pirates failed to capitalize on a bases loaded situation, this time in the fifth inning.
Thursday, July 8: Two solo home runs and a one hitter allowed the Astros to sweep the Pirates in the series finale. Lance Berkman would hit his third and fourth home runs in the series. The first coming in the 1st inning and the second was given up in the fourth. While in most major league games two runs is not enough to get the win, Roy Oswalt pitched a complete game one hitter. He would also strike out 8 and walk 2 in the win. Ross Ohlendorf would pitch well again as he would go seven innings allowing two runs on seven hits, while walking one and striking out five. Unfortunately for him the Pirates bats were silenced, with their only hit coming from Neil Walker in the first inning.
This road trip has started off like most road trips for the Pirates this season. The Astros have a 6-0 record against the Pirates this season and will not play the Buccos again until they travel to the Burgh for a three game set starting July 16. The Pirates must now lick their wounds and head to Milwaukee for a three game series against the Brewers. The Pirates are 3-5 against the Brew Crew this year, but are 2-1 in Milwaukee this year.
Current Record: 30-55
And…As Always…..Lets Go Bucs!!!!!