Correia Gives Quality Start In Pirates 2-1 Loss

Image Courtesy Pittsburgh Pirates

The Pittsburgh Pirates saw yet another pitchers duel in game four of the 2012 season. Right-hander Kevin Correia took the mound at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Tuesday against Cy Young Award winner Clayton Kershaw. The lefty was the third Cy Young winner that the club faced over their first four games of the season.

Correia was solid for the Pirates in his 2012 season debut. After struggling at PNC Park last season, Pirates Manager Clint Hurdle elected to give Correia the first start on the road in order to get him some momentum into season. It proved to pay off, as Correia became the fourth Pirates starter to give the club a quality start.

The 31-year-old allowed just one run on four hits over six frames. He walked two and struck out three while throwing 81 pitches, 52 for strikes.

The lone run the Dodgers were able to score off Correia came in the first inning. Infielder Dee Gordon lead off the frame with a broken bat base hit into right field. Gordon didn’t waste any time on the bases paths. He took off after Correia threw his first pitch to Mark Ellis to easily swipe second base. Gordon advanced to third after a groundout by Ellis, and scored after Matt Kemp hit a groundout to plate the only run allowed by Correia.

Correia followed Erik Bedard, Jeff Karstens and James McDonald in the starting rotation to give the club the fourth solid outing to start the young season. All four pitched at least six frames in their starts and have combined to allow just five runs over 25.0 innings.

Kershaw held the Pirates bats to just two hits over six frames while striking out seven. The Pirates, however, were finally able to plate a run off the lefty in the 7th inning.

For the second time in as many games, Matt Hague was able to tie the game up for the Pirates. In the Bucs eventual 5-4 walkoff win on Sunday, Hague connected for a pinch-hit RBI single to left in the 8th inning to tie the game at 4. On Tuesday in Los Angeles, Hague came through again, this time in the 7th inning.

Alex Presley and Andrew McCutchen started the rally off lefty Kershaw by hitting back-to-back singles. It marked the first time the Bucs had more than one hit off Kershaw in the same inning. Casey McGehee hit a fly out to deep right field allowing both runners to tag up and advance to second and third. Hague hit a RBI grounder to short to tie the game at 1 for his second career RBI.

Right-hander Jason Grilli took the mound in the 8th inning to face the heart of the Dodgers lineup. After striking out his first two, Grilli hung a 2-1 slider that Andre Ethier took deep for a solo-shot to right field for the go-ahead run. The earned run was the first allowed by the Pirates pen this season (10.2 innings). With the 2-1 loss, the Pirates fall to 2-2 on the season.

Game Notes:

  • Relief: Juan Cruz: IP, 2H, 2K; Jason Grilli: IP, H, R, 2K
  • Casey McGehee led off the second frame with a triple out to deep center field. McGehee now has three  extra base hits already this season over three games.
  • Alex Presley was the only Pirate to pick up multiple hits on the day (2-for-4).
  • The Pirates combined for 10 strikeouts against the Dodgers arms.

Wednesday Game Info:

  • Left-hander Erik Bedard will make his second start of the season. Bedard will face right-hander Chad Billingsley of Los Angeles. The game starts at 10:00 p.m. ET.

  • Kristy, I think you are doing a great job but I wish you would use other words in addition to “Plate”. I’m not trying to be snarky. Like I said I I think you are doing a great job.

    The position I’m worried about is ss It looks like Overbay all over again. The guy just flat out can’t hit and they have millions committed  to him  for two years and his glove doesn’t make up for his bat.

    • It sounds a little snarky anyway.
      I think it’s too early to make any generalizations yet… it’s been four games. Lets give all the guys on the team at least a few weeks before we even start to make assumptions about how they are living up to their contractual obligations.

  • I listened to a chunk of this game on satellite during my drive home. Vin Scully was absent from the Dodgers home opener for just the second time in 63 years. One time he was calling the Masters. He is apparently sick with a cold. Listening to a Dodgers game without his voice is very odd. Maury Wills was in the booth for a couple of innings and he sounds like he is about out of his mind. He went off on a tangent about how much of a slump he was in during the 1962 season and he and John Roseboro were close to quitting baseball and opening a gas station together.

    Pittsburgh came into the game with the fewest walks in the NL and proceeded to not get walked at all. Part of that is, as Kristy pointed out, the stellar opponents starting against the club. But part of that is a continuation of the last couple of years (11th in the NL in walks in 2011 and 15th in 2010). It’s early, but five walks through four games is not a good start.

  • So glad they keep running Tabata out there everyday. Why put in a gold glove centerfielder who’s scored 113 runs, had 42 doubles, 25 homers, 94 rbi and 23 stolen bases in one season when they can play a slap hitter everyday who has never even dreamed of those numbers?
    But he has so much potential, oh yeah, right.
    That will win a lot of games.