Brewers stop Pirates, 3-2, for 8th straight win
MILWAUKEE — The Pirates gambled and lost Saturday when they tried to steal a run on a foul popup.
The Milwaukee Brewers went on to score in a more conventional fashion, and it carried them to their eighth consecutive victory, a 3-2 win at Miller Park.
The Pirates missed a chance to score in the eighth inning, which ended on an unusual play.
With one out, Starling Marte was at third base and Travis Snider at second. Andrew McCutchen popped out to catcher Jonathan Lucroy in foul territory.
Snider broke for second base, and Lucroy threw to shortstop Jean Segura. Marte broke for home. Instead of being tricked into chasing Snider in a rundown, Segura fired the ball to reliever Jim Henderson, who had drifted toward home plate.
Henderson tagged Marte out, then spiked the ball as he went to the dugout.
Pirates manager Clint Hurdle went out to talk to home plate umpire Bill Miller, but the play was not reviewed.
“When the guy is clearly out, it doesn't make much sense to review it,” Hurdle said. “It seemed like a good opportunity for us to steal a run. They made a play, and we didn't.”
The Pirates used a similar play last season in a victory over the Houston Astros on a foul ball up the first-base line. On Saturday, Hurdle reminded his players to be alert for such an opportunity if there were runners on the corners and one out.
“They just executed,” Snider said. “Segura threw a perfect strike, and the pitcher was there. We took a shot, but it didn't come out our way.”
The double play energized the sellout crowd of 42,828 and also may have sparked the Brewers.
With one out, reliever Mark Melancon (0-1) yielded consecutive singles to Ryan Braun, Aramis Ramirez and Lucroy.
“The cutter was elevated a little bit,” Hurdle said. “Anytime you get three hits in a row late in the game, it's going to work to your favor. We weren't able to string three together; they were.”
Pirates starter Edinson Volquez didn't sizzle as much as he did six days earlier, when he retired 16 in a row against the St. Louis Cardinals. But the right-hander kept the Brewers in check for 6 1⁄3 innings, allowing two runs (one earned) and four hits. He received a no-decision.
Before the game, Brewers center fielder Carlos Gomez was presented with his 2013 Gold Glove. A few minutes later, he celebrated by crushing a fastball from Volquez over the center-field wall.
Gomez is not a prototypical leadoff hitter — he has twice as many extra-base hits (eight) as walks (four) — but he fits in with Milwaukee's bash-away offense.
With one out in the second, Khris Davis hit a bouncer to the left. Shortstop Jordy Mercer was gliding over, but third baseman Pedro Alvarez stepped in front and booted the ball. Scooter Gennett's single down the third-base line moved Davis to third.
Volquez got ahead of Yovani Gallardo 0-2 with a pair of curveballs. Volquez tried to snap off another, but it bounced off the edge of the plate and rolled toward the Pirates' dugout. Davis scored on the wild pitch to make it 2-0.
“Gotta block that one,” Martin said, shaking his head.
The Pirates got even in the third against Gallardo. Travis Ishikawa led off with a double that smacked off the wall in left. Mercer singled, and Ishikawa stopped at third instead of testing Gomez's arm.
Ishikawa scored on Marte's grounder. Snider's single drove in Mercer.
McCutchen followed with a single — ending his 0-for-12 slump — then stole second. That ought to dispel doubts about his cranky left ankle, which flared up Friday night.
The Brewers threatened in the seventh, set up when McCutchen dropped Davis' fly ball for an error. Mark Reynolds walked, and Gennett bunted both runners over.
Lefty Tony Watson relieved Volquez and took care of a pair of right-handed batters. Rickie Weeks flied out to shallow left, and Gomez grounded out.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Two wild-card format hurting Pirates in short term
- Pitt men’s basketball adds junior-college guard
- Starkey: The kick returner and the grizzly bear
- Risks don’t get any better as online dating prospers
- Animal activists targeting Vick at Steelers preseason game
- Bryant suspension opens doors for other Steelers’ receivers
- Steelers notebook: LB Harrison believes Goodell will prevail in Brady ruling
- Honored Westmoreland youth counselor sought in theft of money from clients
- Pitt defense is entering new season with something to prove
- Steelers trade 6th-round pick for Jaguars kicker Scobee
- God is touchy topic in ICU, Pitt study finds