As with so many games the Pirates have played recently, this one hardly seems worth examining in detail. Actually, this one was worse than usual, with two Triple-A pitchers -- Wilfredo Boscan and Jorge Rondon -- allowing 13 runs between them in a 15-4 blowout loss.
Boscan, of course, made the start because Juan Nicasio was on the restricted list. Like many pitchers the Pirates have used recently (like Rondon, and like the guy whose place Boscan took on the active roster today, Curtis Partch), Boscan is perfectly good Triple-A depth, but he's a break-glass-in-case-of-emergency guy at the big-league level. Tonight, he got through three scoreless innings before falling apart in a catastrophic seven-run fourth highlighted by a grand slam by Angel Pagan. Later in the inning, Conor Gillaspie added a two-run shot.
The Giants tacked on in the fifth and sixth off Arquimedes Caminero and A.J. Schugel, who at least limited the damage to one run apiece. Then came Rondon, who allowed one run in the seventh and five in the eighth, thanks to a long series of singles and doubles. Erik Kratz pitched the ninth, and, naturally, recorded a scoreless frame, doing far better than most of the Bucs' actual relievers.
The Pirates tacked on some mostly meaningless runs in the late innings. Jacob Stallings got his first big-league hit, a double off Johnny Cueto, in the seventh to score the Pirates' first run. Then David Freese hit a two-run homer in the bottom of the eighth (delighting a young fan who wound up with the ball). Overall, though, the game was another lost one for what's become a terrible Bucs pitching staff, and no amount of late-inning offense was going to save it. Oh, and to top it off, Starling Marte left due to what the Pirates are describing as foot discomfort. We'll know more Wednesday.