Contrary to popular belief recently, the magic that surrounds this team has yet to run it’s course. The four game losing streak has ended and the Pirates have now won back to back games with tonight’s win over the New York Mets coming in typical dramatic fashion.
Charlie Morton started and allowed two runs over seven innings of solid work. Vin Mazzaro pitched a perfect 11th inning to get his fifth win. Pedro Alvarez hit a two run home run in the first inning. It was his 25th of the season.
Player of the Game: Jordy Mercer
This one is an easy call. Any time someone has a walk off hit, they are automatically the most important player in the game. It was really important for Mercer’s confidence as well. He has had a rough month. Before the game winning single, Mercer only had three hits for the entire month and his batting average dropped 22 points.
Play of the Game: Jordy Mercer
Surprise, surprise. The walk off hit is the play of the game as well.
The offense was dead all night again outside of Alvarez’s home run. Morton pitched extremely well but an RBI single from David Wright in the sixth and a solo home run from Kirk Nieuwenhuis in the seventh had all the makings of another disappointing loss. Especially since they left the bases loaded in the ninth inning and left a man stranded in scoring position in the tenth. But thanks to Mercer’s heroics, the Pirates find themselves back to just one game behind the Cardinals and they have a nine game cushion in the wild card standings.
Up Next: New York Mets, Saturday, 7:15pm
A.J. Burnett will take the mound for the Pirates in his second start since returning from the disabled list. He didn’t go very deep into the game in his first start back but he was effective, as per usual. Unfortunately, the stint on the disabled list didn’t effect his run support.
He’ll be facing Carlos Torres who will be making his first start of the year. It’s a spot start for Matt Harvey so quite frankly, I don’t care who’s pitching. Missing Harvey is the exciting part. Torres has only been in the majors since mid June when he was called up when Greg Burke was sent down. He’s been in the bullpen since then and hasn’t thrown more than 45 pitches in any appearance to this point.