ATLANTA - JULY 27: David Ross #8 of the Atlanta Braves celebrates after knocking in the game-winning run in the 10th inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Turner Field on July 27, 2011 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)
This was pretty much the typical story for the Pirates, who got a great performance from their pitching staff (Paul Maholm was brilliant in this one) but couldn't do much offensively. They lost 2-1 as Chris Leroux - who recently replaced Chase D'Arnaud on the 25-man roster in a move designed to help the Pirates' bullpen recover after the 19-inning debacle on Tuesday - allowed three singles in the tenth.
The Pirates got a fair number of opportunities in the early innings, but couldn't cash in on them. They got two men aboard in the first, but Pedro Alvarez struck out to end it. They got Steve Pearce to second with no outs in the second inning thanks to an error by Wilkin Ramirez, but the bottom of the order went down easily after that. In the third, Xavier Paul led off with a single but got gunned down at second. In the fourth, the Pirates got men on first and third with one out, but Brandon Wood's fly ball to left was a little bit shallow, and Alvarez got nailed on a close play at the plate.
In the sixth, the Bucs picked up a run on Garrett Jones' solo homer and then Neil Walker singled. But he too got caught stealing, which turned out to be a shame, because Alvarez doubled later in the inning. In the seventh, Wood walked to lead off the inning, but then Eric Fryer couldn't lay down a sacrifice and ended up striking out. Then Maholm came up and bunted into a double play, as he popped it up and Jair Jurrjens alertly let it fall before throwing to second. That's an awful lot of chances, and specifically a lot of leadoff hitters reaching and then no one cashing them in.