The Pirates finished the regular season portion of their home schedule this afternoon by dropping a 11-3 decision to the Reds. With the loss the Bucs fell back into a tie with Cincinnati in the Wild Card race.
It was a terribly disappointing day, as there was a buzz of excitement outside the park and all along the North Shore this morning. Two hours before the game, fans were already piled up at the entrance gates, with hundreds of others waited in lines that jammed the sidewalks around the stadium. Once inside, the sellout crowd greeted the Pirates with hundreds of Jolly Rogers and a minute-long standing ovation. But that would be the end of the fun for the Pirates and their fans today.
Jeff Locke continued his second-half swoon, getting pummeled for five runs in the first. Over his last 44.2 innings, Locke has allowed 36 earned runs for an astronomical 7.25 ERA. (James McDonald posted a 7.15 ERA in his last 45.1 innings pitched last season.) Jeanmar Gomez relieved Locke in the second inning and promptly gave up two more runs. And that is all the Reds would need.
Hurdle said that Locke’s usage the rest of the season would be reevaluated: “We’ll start those discussions tomorrow.”
The only other events of note from today's ballgame were: Stolmy Pimental throwing a pitch behind Brandon Phillips' back, which led to warnings being issued to both teams and a prolonged walk behind home plate by a clearly angry Phillips; and Andrew McCutchen receiving a nice ovation as he ran off the field for a defensive replacement following warm-ups in the eighth.
After the game Hurdle shared that when he greeted McCutchen in dugout after the ovation he said to his center fielder: “Well done my good and faithful servant.”
- Russell Martin was removed from the game in the fifth inning due to a sore left knee. There was no update on his status following the game.
- The Pirates home attendance for the season was 2,256,862. That is the second highest attendance mark in team history.
- The Pirates finish with a 50-31 record at home.
- With the Washington Nationals dropping the first game of their doubleheader vs. the Marlins, the Pirates' magic number for a playoff birth stands at two.