Despite a surprising strong performance, no one wanted to see Ryan Vogelsong faced the Tigers lineup for a third time. Hurdle removed him after 5.0 innings of one-run ball for Caminero, who promptly made a small fire and then poured some gas on it and gave up a grand slam to Jarrod Saltalamacchia that was the difference in a 7-3 loss to Detroit.
Caminero entered with a 2-1 lead, loaded the bases and if there was any beef with Hurdle’s handling in this one is maybe you pull Caminero with two outs and a one-run lead to protect it. But this is where missing Jared Hughes hurts you. Caminero stayed in and Salty smoked a grand slam to take a 5-2 Detroit lead.
The Pirates bats made Shane Greene work early in this one with two runs in the first inning as Greene struggled with control and even walked in a run on a Cervelli RBI walk. Greene threw 3o+ pitches in the first inning…and then the Pirates bats went silent. For as much as they’ve been jumping on starting pitchers early and making them work, getting the pitch count up, they’ve disappeared just as fast and haven’t been able to get that knockout punch for the starter. The Bucs didn’t record another hit until the 6th inning. Greene ended up going 6.0 innings for a quality start when it looked like he might not get out of the first at one point.
They didn’t score again until the 8th inning when McCutchen hit a ball about two inches away from a home run, off the top of the wall for an RBI double. Seriously, how many balls have this team hit off the top of the wall this season? Cutch could easily have 3-5 home runs. Freese grounded out moving Cutch to third and Marte struck out on a questionable strike three call to end the Pirates best late threat.
The Bucs fall to 5-4 and will look to Gerrit Cole to snap their two-game losing streak to the Tigers in an early 12:35PM afternoon game.