Bucs started the game in unsurprising fashion, spotting the Cardinals four runs in the first inning.
Then something strange happened as the Pirates would go on to play seven innings of quality baseball. Williams settled down. Polanco and Bell both contributed offensively (no kidding). Glasnow looked sharp out of the pen, while delivering two scoreless innings. Things were shaping up and after Cervelli’s three run home run in the 8th inning, the Bucs had set the stage to complete a solid comeback win.
BUT… while leading 8-5 going into the bottom of the 9th, the Bucs turned to Vazquez who pissed it all away without recording an out.
Here is how the scoring went for what’s now in contention for Most Painful Pirates Game to Watch of 2018:
The Cardinals batted all nine in the 1st inning on their way to pushing four runs across. Carpenter, Bader, Fowler, and Munoz were all contributors in the hit department. Williams wasn’t fooling anyone.
The Pirates began chipping away at the deficit in the top of the 2nd inning on singles from Dickerson, Polanco, and Mercer. The Bucs were able to push one run across, making the score 4-1, Cardinals.
The Bucs’ offensive effort continued in the 4th and 5th innings, courtesy of a Gregory Polanco RBI double and a Josh Bell two run home run. And just like that, the four run deficit had evaporated while Bell and Polanco began working their way back into the discussion of relevance.
With one out in the bottom of the 5th inning, Dexter Fowler hit a hot shot down the first base line. Josh Bell barely reacted to the batted ball, ole-ing it in to right field, resulting in a double for Fowler. Greg Garcia would later single to center, scoring Fowler and putting the Cardinals up 5-4.
Wasting no time in the 8th inning, the Pirates tied the game at five on a Moran single and a Polanco RBI double. The Bucs finally took the lead on an Adam Frazier walk and a huge(situationally large… it literally scraped the wall) three run home run off the bat of Francisco Cervelli.
The Pirates turned the ball over to Vazquez in the bottom of the 9th with a three run lead. Should be an easy save situation, right? Wrong.
Bader led off with a double. Pham reached on an error by Sean Rodriguez. Ozuna walked on five pitches to load the bases. Luke Volt delivered a two run single to left and Munoz supplied the dagger with a walk off home run to center.
Final score: 10-8, Cardinals. Painful.
Bucs will try again tomorrow at 8:15pm behind Jameson Taillon.