Marlins rough up Correia, split series with Pirates
By Rob Biertempfel
Published: Tuesday, May 15, 2012, 10:10 p.m.
MIAMI — It's tough enough for Pirates right-hander Kevin Correia to win games on a good day, considering how little run support he gets. So when he pitches poorly, it's practically impossible.
The Miami Marlins rocked Correia in the fourth inning Tuesday and cruised to a 6-2 victory.
Correia lasted 32⁄3 innings and yielded six runs, eight hits and four walks. The Marlins batted around against him in the fourth and broke the game open by scoring five runs.
“It was just tough night at the office for him,” Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said. “It's funny, when you look at it. He got 14 outs and all of them were on three pitches or less. But there was the eight hits and the six runs ...”
Correia's command was erratic last night. The outs he got were efficient, but he put too much traffic on the bases.
“I got away with it for a little while,” Correia said. “It caught up to me in (the fourth) inning. I'll go back and work on it and, hopefully, it will be fine for my next start.”
It was the second time in four starts Correia (1-4) did not pitch at least five innings. He has not won a game since April 15.
Correia and A.J. Burnett are the only starters currently in the rotation who have not yet reached two victories. Burnett missed the start of the season while recovering from eye surgery.
Then again, Correia hasn't gotten much help. He's held opponents to two runs or fewer in four of his seven starts, but the Pirates have scored a total of just 10 runs while he's been on the mound.
After allowing eight runs and four walks last night, Correia's WHIP is 1.325. That's lower than the WHIPs of Erik Bedard (1.371), Charlie Morton (1.440) and injured Jeff Karstens (1.417).
Marlins right-hander Josh Johnson (1-3), who struggled in his first seven starts this season, held the Pirates to two runs over seven innings. Johnson went into the game with a 5.87 ERA and had allowed 13 runs over his previous three outings (15 innings).
For the fourth game in a row, the Pirates scored in the first inning. With two outs, Andrew McCutchen walked and Pedro Alvarez singled to left field. Garrett Jones lined an RBI single to right.
The runners advanced an extra base when Giancarlo Stanton's throw sailed wide of home plate. Clint Barmes lined out to shortstop Jose Reyes, ending the rally.
The Marlins tied it in the bottom of the inning on Hanley Ramirez's run-scoring double.
Jose Tabata and Neil Walker began the third with back-to-back singles. But McCutchen, way ahead of a breaking ball, struck out. Alvarez grounded into a double play.
“It was one of the turning points of the game,” Hurdle said. “We had a shot, and we had the guys up there we wanted. We need to convert opportunities. We know that better than anyone. But we weren't able to convert that one.”
In the fourth, a flurry of singles gave the Marlins a 5-1 lead, and a double ended Correia's night.
With the bases loaded and none out, John Buck's two-run single broke the tie.
Omar Infante's bases-loaded single made it 5-1.
Hanley Ramirez crushed a double off the right field wall, missing a homer by about 3 feet but still driving in Reyes.
Michael McKenry hit a solo homer in the seventh.
Rob Biertempfel is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at email@example.com or 412-320-7811.
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