When I found out yesterday that Brandon Cumpton would be starting today's game, I kind of had a hunch that the winning streak might be coming to an end. Cumpton's one start in Triple-A since being sent back to Indianapolis was pretty ugly (five innings, eight hits, six runs) and the Phillies are a pretty average baseball team, which is generally enough to make some headway against a Triple-A pitcher.
Just like his first two starts, Cumpton battled his way through the lineup twice and then got roasted his third time through. It all came apart really quickly for Cumpton in the sixth; he gave up three singles in the first four hitters he faced, then a double and suddenly the 0-0 game was 3-0.
The Pirates seemed like they were on the verge of getting back into the game a few times. Russell Martin walked to lead off the bottom of the sixth, but was then erased with an Andrew McCutchen double play before Garrett Jones's homer. In the seventh, Jordy Mercer laced a single to left and was thrown out at second by Domonic Brown's ridiculous arm. Travis Snider followed that up with a single of his own, but was stranded after hard-hit outs by Gaby Sanchez and Starling Marte. Four hard hit balls in the inning and nothing to show for it. In the eighth, Russell Martin drew a leadoff walk and Andrew McCutchen drove a pitch to the front of the warning track before Anthony Bastardo came in to face Garrett Jones and Pedro Alvarez. Brandon Inge struck out hitting for Jones, but Alvarez drew a walk and Neil Walker singled before Jordy Mercer struck out with the bases loaded to end the threat.
Some nights it's just not meant to be, you know? These nights are a little easier to stomach after nine straight wins.