Originally written on Raise the Jolly Roger!  |  Last updated 11/19/14
The Pirates’ win streak came to an end on Tuesday night, as the Phillies handed them their first loss in almost two weeks. A huge Tuesday night crowd watched the Bucs fail to get a clutch hit in a couple of big situations — for the first time in a while, things didn’t go their way when it mattered most. Brandon Cumpton‘s spot start went a lot like his first two did. He was very good through five innings, but once hitters saw him for a third time they figured him out. Cumpton looked quite sharp early on and was hardly threatened in the early part of the game, but Phillies starter Jonathan Pettibone was equally impressive. The game was scoreless through five and it looked like an unexpected pitcher’s duel. That quickly came to an end – at least for Cumpton – in the sixth, though, when the Phillies were really able to square him up several times. They put three on the board with a couple of singles and a few rockets towards the Notch. That ended Cumpton’s night (and possibly his current stint as a Pirate). Justin Wilson and Bryan Morris posted zeroes for the rest of the night, continuing the bullpen’s incredible run, but the damage was done. Garrett Jones blasted a solo homer in the sixth, but the Bucs missed several other chances to score. Jones left the bases loaded in the fourth, and Jordy Mercer left them loaded in the eighth. The Bucs twice came up with two-out hits with men on second, but neither was able to score the runner, and the next guy left them loaded both times. Mercer also ran in to an out after leading off the seventh with a hit, and Russell Martin lined in to a tough-luck DP in the first with Starling Marte in motion. It was just that kind of night – the big hit never came.  The offense certainly didn’t look good, though, and it’s amazing that Brandon Inge ended up being the right-handed pinch hitter of choice when the Bucs needed a hit. (He struck out, of course.) The Bucs really need Jose Tabata back to bolster the bench, and they could certainly use more help beyond that. That said, even though it was a tough loss and seeing Phillies fans celebrate in PNC Park is painful, Bucs fans can still point to the standings and look forward to the next one. Can’t win ‘em all. Phillies 3, Pirates 1 / Box / 2013 Record: 51-31 / Next: Wednesday, vs. Phillies, 7:05
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