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Pirates lose Neil Walker, accumulate ejections in 9-1 loss


I planned to recap this one after playing with two bands last night in a show that ended at something like 2:30. That may have been a little ambitious. But if you didn't see the game, there probably isn't a lot you really want to hear about -- just a Neil Walker injury, another poor Jonathan Sanchez performance, a bunch of ejections, some weird ball/strike calls, and a 9-1 loss.

Walker hurt his hand after it lost a battle with a cleat in the eighth inning, and it sounds like he'll be out at least a week. Sanchez gave up back-to-back homers to start the game, then hit Allen Craig. Umpire Tim Timmons threw him out immediately, and Clint Hurdle got thrown out soon after, as if he didn't realize that Timmons was doing him a favor. Then Lance Lynn hit Starling Marte twice, and Timmons threw out Jay Bell for yelling about that.

In the midst of that, the Pirates struck out 11 times, although they were dealing what was at times a strange strike zone -- Garrett Jones got rung up on a pitch way outside the strike zone with two on and no outs with the Pirates down only four in the seventh. (Walker walked, and then Pedro Alvarez grounded into a double play with the bases loaded to end the inning.) The Cardinals scored four runs against Vin Mazzaro in the eighth to turn the game into a full-on blowout, however.

I would hope that Sanchez has made his last appearance as a Pirate, although Clint Hurdle says he could pitch out of the bullpen tonight.