The Pittsburgh Pirates continued their Spring Training scheduled with a 5-1 loss to the Boston Red Sox Thursday. The Pirates are now 4-4-2 on the spring.
This contest marked the Pirates third sellout of the spring in five home games, and the 8,455 people in attendance represented the third-largest crowd at McKechnie Field.
Clay Buchholz picked up the win for the Red Sox and is 2-0 this spring, while A.J. Burnett earned his first loss. Burnett pitched 2.1 innings and while he did not allow any hits, he surrendered two runs and allowed three walks.
It was the Pirates that struck first in the opening inning with an Andrew McCutchen sacrifice fly that scored Sean Rodriguez. Rodriguez reached base with a single, and advanced to second on a pick off throwing error. Jordy Mercer singled to advance Rodriguez 90 feet.
Burnett walked his first two batters of the third inning, and after getting Dustin Pedroia to fly out, was removed from the game and replaced by Ryan Beckman. Beckman’s first batter was David Ortiz who, on an 0-2 pitch, connected on his first home run of the spring, scoring three runs. Two batters later, with Beckman still in the game, Pablo Sandoval connected on the first pitch he saw, hitting his first homer of the spring.
Mark Melancon pitched the fourth inning for the Pirates and allowed Shane Victorino to hit an RBI double that scored Jackie Bradley Jr. Melancon surrendered two hits and struck out one batter in his inning of work.
Arquimedes Caminero continued to make his push towards making the major league roster with another scoreless inning. Caminero allowed one hit and struck out a batter. Caminero has yet to allow a run this season and is out of minor-league options.
Nick Kingham followed Caminero with two shutout innings, striking out one hitter. Bobby LaFromboise and Deolis Guerra each threw a scoreless inning.
Elia Diaz was the game’s starting catcher going 2-3 at the plate and now is 5-10 for the spring. The game was Corey Hart’s first Grapefruit League action for the Pirates. Hart played first base for three innings and went 1-1 at the plate and was hit by a pitch. Jung-ho Kang made his first start at third base and batted cleanup, hitting 1-2 in the game.
The Pirates will play a home game on Friday against the Minnesota Twins which will start at 1:05. Casey Sadler is expected to make the start for the Pirates and Ervin Santana will do the same for the Twins. Tony Watson, Jared Hughes, Radhames Liz, Rob Scahill and Josh Wall will also pitch for the Pirates. The contest will be broadcast on pirates.com.
This is the projected starting line up for Friday’s game:
1. Josh Harrison 5
2. Gregory Polanco 9
3. Andrew McCutchen 8
4. Neil Walker 4
5. Pedro Alvarez DH
6. Jung-ho Kang 6
7. Andrew Lambo 3
8. Francisco Cervelli 2
9. Sean Rodriguez 7
Starting pitcher- Casey Sadler