Originally posted on Raise the Jolly Roger!  |  Last updated 6/9/12

The Pirates were able to get the bats going early and ride a strong start to a solid win Friday night in front of a nearly sold out crowd at PNC Park. That makes 10 wins in the last 13 contests for the red-hot Bucs.

Neil Walker led the charge with three hits against a struggling Luke Hochevar, who the Bucs squared up pretty well in the early innings. Garrett Jones knocked Neil in with a double in the first, and the Pirates set up shop again in the second when Rod Barajas led off with a single. Eric Hosmer (normally a 1B) botched the ball in right field, allowing Rod to take second. Clint Barmes continued his recent hot streak with a base hit, and Barajas surprisingly came chugging around third despite the fact that there were no outs and Jeff Francoeur (who has a cannon) was in center. The throw beat Rod but was slightly off-line, and Barajas made a brilliant maneuver around the catcher and was able to reach out and touch home with his hand. He was shockingly ruled safe, and that appeared to be the right call on the replay. Probably the play of the game.

Hurdle deadpans on Barajas’ slide: “Pure athleticism in its rarest form. I think that’s called a swim move in football.”

— Bill Brink (@BrinkPG) June 9, 2012

After two outs, Walker delivered an RBI single to extend the lead to 3-0 and it seemed like the Bucs were rolling.

Erik Bedard started off the game with no problems, but the Royals got to him in the third with a walk, double, and single for two runs. Other than that, though, Bedard gave the Bucs a big start that they really needed. The bullpen was in pretty bad shape after logging a bunch of innings in Cincy, and Erik (who hasn’t gone all that deep into many games) was able to go seven strong. He allowed five hits, three walks, and struck out five – but more importantly, never really put the game in danger even after the Royals cut the lead to one.

The Pirates got one run back in the fourth on a silly play by Kansas City. Pedro Alvarez hit a rocket double to center with one out, then moved to third on a Jose Tabata infield single. The Royals executed the useless third-to-first move to “pick off” Tabata…except that Jose was able to stay in a rundown long enough to allow Pedro to score. I don’t know why the Royals were OK with that trade, but it was good baserunning by Pedro (and Tabata…well…AFTER he was originially picked off).

That would be enough for Bedard and the bullpen. Jason Grilli and Joel Hanrahan both breezed through 1-2-3 innings in the 8th and 9th, finishing out the Pirates’ second win in a row. It was nice to see Joel bounce back after his blown save on Thursday, and the (almost) sellout crowd certainly was behind him. PNC was indeed packed, and I expect it to stay that way for a while as long as the Bucs keep playing like this.

The win brings the Bucs to a season-high three games over .500. Cincinnati won, so the Pirates remain two games back, but they are now alone in second because St. Louis lost to Cleveland.

Pirates 4, Royals 2 / Box / 2012 Record: 30-27 / Next: Saturday, vs. Royals, 7:15

MVP: Bedard (+.176) / LVP: Presley (-.077) / Key play: Jones’ first inning double

©2012 Raise the Jolly Roger. All Rights Reserved.


Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Twitter reacts to parole board member wearing Chiefs tie at OJ Simpson’s hearing

Jourdan Lewis will miss start of camp for domestic abuse trial

Vick 'truly sorry' for comments about Kaepernick

NFL owners pushing for Ezekiel Elliott suspension?

Report: Derrick Rose in ‘serious talks’ to join Cavs


Giants co-owner: Kaepernick is not being blackballed

Report: Lakers wanted to sign D-Wade if Bulls bought him out

Report: Bell has no plans to miss regular season games

OJ Simpson could cash in on signing autographs if paroled

Report: If Rockets land Melo, LeBron could join him in 2018

Le'Veon Bell wants to be paid like 'a No. 1 RB and No. 2 WR'

The 'Let's show a little love for James Jones' quiz

Making an NFL GM change in the summer has its benefits

Every NFL team’s biggest question as training camps start

Box Score 7/20: Nothing but Nolan

The 'Yoan Moncada era starts now' quiz

Every MLB team's biggest need at the trade deadline

Who won the Open Championship in the year you were born?

Box Score 7/19: The shadow of the trade deadline begins to fall over baseball

The Orioles need to unwind past deals if they are going to rebuild

The 'No one is betterer than Roger Federer' quiz

BIG3 Referee Hotline Bling: Sam Hinkie is calling the shots

Box Score 7/18: Burying a glove is fine until you have a zombie glove in the outfield

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Yardbarker Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The 'Let's show a little love for James Jones' quiz

Making an NFL GM change in the summer has its benefits

The 'Yoan Moncada era starts now' quiz

The Orioles need to unwind past deals if they are going to rebuild

BIG3 Referee Hotline Bling: Sam Hinkie is calling the shots

The 'No one is betterer than Roger Federer' quiz

The 'Youth in baseball is cyclical' quiz

The unexpected rise of the Connecticut Sun

Getaway Day: Class is back in session

The 'Safeties in numbers' quiz

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker