Here are your This Week in Buccos Baseball Notes for 7/20/15 thru 7/26/15, the 16th week of the Pittsburgh Pirates 2015 regular season.
Weekly result: 4 Wins and 3 Losses, 32 Runs Scored and 33 Runs Allowed.
Hero of the week: Jung Ho Kang. Kang recorded multiple hits in 5 straight games this week. He was 11 for 28 (a .423 batting average) with 4 doubles and 5 runs scored.
Zero of the week: Pedro Florimon. Florimon proved this week why he is not a major league caliber player. He struck out in half of his 8 ABs this week, committed an error, and stood in the box dumbfounded as a ball he hit slowly down 1st base line rolled fair.
How do you spell relief? M-A-R-K M-E-L-A-N-C-O-N. Mark Melancon continues to just nail games down. Mark the Shark was once again a perfect 3 for 3 in save opportunities posting a scoreless inning in all 3 outings.
#HURDLED: There is just no excuse for allowing Charlie Morton to pitch to good left-handed hitters the 4th time through the order in a close game. Mike Moustakas made Clint Hurdle learn that lesson the hard way on Wednesday Night when the Royals 3B took Morton deep for a 3 run blast in the 7th inning.
The little things that matter: Where should we start? How about Andrew McCutchen’s insistence to allow runners to take second base by making ill-advised throws to 3rd base in which he over shoots the cut off man? Or how about 3B coach Rick Sofield sending a runner to get cut down at the plate in the 9th inning of a game in which the Bucs were losing by 3 runs? The Pirates continue to botch fundamentals on a daily basis. It is amazing that it hasn’t cost them in the standings all that much…yet. THIS NEEDS FIXED ASAP!
It must be Hidden Vigorish: A month ago Max Scherzer no hit the Pirates in a dominating performance. Entirely differently story this week. The Bucs took Scherzer deep….really deep…three different times. Two of the blasts cleared the stadium. Scherzer had not allowed 3 homers in a game since Sept. 15, 2011.
Stats that blow my mind: Mark Melanacon has converted 30 straight save opportunities. That is impressive. Melancon has not allowed an earned run since May 11th. That is downright mind boggling.
Records and Milestones: Mark Melancon recorded his 100th career save in the Pirates 10-7 win over the Royals on 7/20/15.
He said what: Max Scherzer had this to say after Gregory Polanco wore him out in a critical AB on Friday night:
He just grinded me all the way through. He did a great job of just fouling fastballs and keeping his swings short.
Tweet of the week: Brent Morel had a hero moment in his brief call up this week. On Friday Morel shot a double into right center for a game winning RBI. On Saturday he was DFA’d.
Thank you, Brent Morel, for leaving us that lovely parting gift on your way back to Indianapolis. #BUCN
— David Henry (@imau2fan) July 25, 2015
Front Office Notes: A fine piece of GM-ing by Neal Huntington this week as the Bucs acquired 3B Aramis Ramirez to plug a hole in the injury riddled left side of the infield. Welcome back Aram!
On The Farm: Since coming off the minor league disabled list Tyler Glasnow has struck out 53 hitters in 33.2 innings for AA Altoona. This is the most dominating minor league pitcher the Pirates have ever had in my recollection.
Highlight of the week: Gregory Polanco and Max Scherzer locked horns in an epic 12 pitch battle on Friday. Polanco fell behind in the count 0-2 before battling back to fill the count full. Then he wasted 5 straight fastballs on the outside corner with foul balls. Finally Scherzer made a mistake by hanging a breaking ball which Polanco launched over the Clemente Wall to tie the game. It was an incredible AB, and this video has every pitch. Scherzer’s reaction is priceless!