March 20, 2012; Tampa, FL, USA; New York Yankees shortstop Eduardo Nunez (26) tags out Pittsburgh Pirates second baseman Neil Walker (18) after he attempted to steal in the first inning at George M. Steinbrenner Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE
The Pirates looked great against Michael Pineda in the first inning, as Andrew McCutchen had a two-run homer to left and Jose Tabata and Neil Walker also had well-hit singles. The Pirates then ran their way into a totally unnecessary out when they apparently called a hit-and-run, despite the fact that Pineda was struggling and already had a three-ball count against Garrett Jones, and Neil Walker was out by a mile at second when Jones missed. (See the picture above.) That helped kill the Pirates' rally, and Erik Bedard came out to pitch with only a 2-0 lead. But no matter, it's Spring Training, and maybe that brain-farty-looking play had some sort of pedagogical value and wasn't just an example of Clint Hurdle running into outs for no reason.
At around that point, I turned the game down and went to cut a podcast interview for Rumbunter, and somehow when I finished, the Bucs were down 7-2. Bedard had allowed two runs in the third, thanks in part to a Pedro Alvarez error, and then was relieved by Jo-Jo Reyes with two outs and two men on in the fourth.
Gulp. Wild pitch, walk, walk, single, single, double, and then Shairon Martis came on to clean up Reyes' mess. At this point, Reyes has allowed 16 hits and six walks in seven innings of work. I would be very surprised if he's not in the next round of cuts.
The next inning, Ryota Igarashi allowed two more runs (despite striking out Alex Rodriguez with 96 MPH heat). Jared Hughes (whose virtues I'd just been extolling on the Rumbunter podcast, as a possible contender for a bullpen spot if the front office decides to option Evan Meek) allowed one more run after giving up a leadoff double in the eighth.