At some point in the distant past, Charlie Morton and Shaun Marcum took the mound to kick off the Pirates final series of 2011 while the Brewers prep for the playoffs and try to avoid the Phillies in the first round. Alex Presley hit a home run to lead the game off, and things just got progressively crazier from there. Here are things that I remember, regardless of importance or order in which they happened.
- Andrew McCutchen didn’t play because he got hit in the balls during batting practice.
- Pedro Alvarez had two hits and three RBIs.
- Xavier Paul also had two hits, including a triple.
- Josh Harrison pinch hit and took three balls in the same at bat. He did not draw his fourth walk of the season.
- Charlie Morton, like James McDonald and Jeff Karstens, seems pretty clearly gassed at this point in the season. I thought Hurdle should’ve pulled him a little earlier tonight but he was clearly trying to get him through five innings to get a win.
- The bottom of the sixth inning was like a microcosm for the bullpen this entire season. Get two quick outs, completely implode, use four guys no one thought would be any good before the season started, but still manage to get out of the inning before the Brewers take the lead.
- Alex Presley just keeps hitting.
- Jason Grilli pitching the eighth inning. He walked a hitter, then hit Ryan Braun and Jerry Hairston back-to-back, which caused Brewers’ fans to boo as if their playoff spot was being taken away, even though Grilli obviously had no idea where the ball was going whenever it left his hand.
- Bullet points are a lazy way to do this sort of recap.
- Grilli avoided disaster mostly because Yuniesky Betancourt came up with the bases loaded entirely through Grilli’s lack of control and just one out, but popped up the first pitch for an infield fly rule anyway. When I say that things could be much worse than Ronny Cedeno, Betancourt is exactly what I mean.
- Saves are a stupid, meaningless stat, but I still think it’s cool that Joel Hanrahan has 40 of them. I just wish he could get seven more to erase Mike Williams from the Pirate record book.
It’s impressive when the 160th Pirate game of the season can hold your attention for four hours. This one managed to do that. No matter what happens, the Pirates will not close 2011 without a win at Miller Park.