Found June 15, 2013 on Pirates Prospects:
Picimg_mlb_apr_18_f4a5
Travis Snider hit the game-tying home run in the 9th, but it was not enough for the Bucs to win. (Photo Credit: David Hague) What a fun baseball game, even if it did not turn out in the Pirates’ favor as the Bucs lost 5-3 in 11 innings. With so much happening, let’s boil this contest down to a series of moments: Moment 1: Brandon Cumpton walks off the field in the second inning having struck out five of his first six hitters. “I was shocked. I had no idea. I didn’t see it coming at all. I was blindsided,” Cumpton told the media Friday when he was asked if he had any idea he would be making his Pirates (40-28) debut so soon. The same could be said for the Los Angeles Dodgers (29-38) their first time facing Cumpton in his Major League debut. With little more than a 93 mph fastball, a breaking ball and a mound of nerves, Cumpton sliced his way through the top of the Dodgers lineup. Leadoff hitter Skip Schumaker looked at a slider that nicked the outside edge for the first K. Then Cuban phenom Yasiel Puig whiffed at a low breaking ball for the second and Adrian Gonzalez swung and missed at two fastballs and could only tip a slider for the third. Three up, three down, 36,941 stunned. “I was trying to throw strikes early,” Cumpton said in his Georgia accent. “Fortunately, I got some swing-and-misses and that helped me out a little bit.” More of the same eye-opening Cumpton in the second inning. Hanley Ramirez whiffed on a slider outside. Andre Ethier got two strikes before he lined out to left, the first L.A. ball in play. No matter, because Cumpton tossed a fastball and slider past Mark Ellis for Strikeout Number Five. When Cumpton went to the Pirates dugout, he probably wasn’t the only one thinking, what just happened? “I had everything running through mind,” Cumpton said. “I was trying to take it all in. Just enjoy the moment.” Moment No. 2: The Pirates get one run across on the throwing error that wasn’t. The Pirates had to bunt and scratch to get their only run off former Cy Young Award winner. First Pittsburgh hitter Alex Presley hit a sharp grounder just inside the third-base line for a double then was bunted over. Kershaw walked Andrew McCutchen and Gaby Sanchez and almost drew an easy inning-ending double play, but shortstop Ramirez’s throw flew away and Presley scored. Originally the play was ruled an error, but Martin ended up with the RBI for the 1-0 Pirates lead. “We wanted to add on more, give [Cumpton] a little bigger safety net than one run,” Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said with a laugh, but Neil Walker struck out on a slider to strand two runners. Moment No. 3: Cumpton is removed to an ovation, but a deficit. Cumpton’s final line: 5+ IP, 7 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 5 K in 76 pitches. On his second time through the L.A. lineup, Cumpton began to fall behind on hitters and he said the Dodgers were sitting on his fastball. A couple mistakes and missed spots went for hits, including five of the last seven hitters. “We were definitely making adjustments,” Cumpton said. “I had every confidence in the world in everything [catcher Russell Martin] was throwing down there. I was going right with it.” Hurdle said Cumpton “matched” Kershaw through five innings with good poise but would not commit to the right-hander beyond this start. Despite giving up hits to the first three batters in the 6th, and ending up charged with three runs, Cumpton got a standing ovation walking back to the dugout at the end. “It was everything and even more than what I expected,” Cumpton said. Moment No. 4: Russell Martin gets robbed. The first two runners in the 6th reached on Kershaw, then Martin worked the count full and drove a belt-high fastball 383 feet to left-center and no further. Skip Schumaker was there to reach over the short wall and slam into it as he caught the possible g0-ahead home run. Kershaw took full advantage of the web gem to strike out Neil Walker looking and get Pedro Alvarez to ground out. Kershaw struck out the Pirates’ side 1-2-3 in the 7th inning to end his quality, Kershawian start: 7 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 3 BB, 8 K to lower his league-best ERA down to 1.84 on the season. Moment No. 5: Brandon Inge’s season OPS falls below Miguel Cabrera’s season OBP. Inge’s .446 OPS would be the lowest by a Pirates player with more than 75 plate appearances since Brian Bixler in 2008. Before the game, Hurdle said, “I’m trying to give Inge some opportunities to get some type of consistency with at-bats, because we need his bat in play coming off the bench.” Moment No. 6: Justin Wilson hits 100 miles per hour. Your future Pirates closer? Moment No. 7: Once Kershaw was away, the Pirates… fell short. The Pirates struck out 12 times on Saturday, the most this homestand. Alvarez had two. (Photo Credit: David Hague) Dodgers manager Don Mattingly went with rookie right-hander Chris Withrow, in his second Major League appearance, for a high-leverage mission: protect a two-run lead agains the heart of the Pirates order. Leadoff hitter Jordy Mercer climbed aboard with a single just over Ramirez’s head, then the control-challenged Withrow (5.0 walks per nine innings over Double-A and Triple-A) walked McCutchen and threw a wild pitch to get the tying run into scoring position. Withrow froze Sanchez and Martin with breaking pitches to keep the runs from scoring. Even though Neil Walker followed up with an RBI single, the Bucs could only scare up one run from the key situation. “Those are at-bats they probably would like to have back,” Hurdle said. Indeed, as his offense left 13 runners on base while getting only 3 to score. For the record, Hurdle thought about using Garrett Jones to pinch-hit for Sanchez there, but pointed out he would have drawn left-handed Paco Rodriguez. For the same record, Sanchez went 0-for-3 against the three right-handed relievers he faced, bringing his season batting average to .203 against righties. Moment No. 8: Travis Snider brings the boom stick to tie it up. Snider entered in the 7th inning, but his winning-time moment came in the 9th against sometimes-closer-but-always-hard-throwing Kenley Jansen. With a 2-2 count, Snider blasted a fastball into seats. Tie ballgame and his first extra-base hit in 14 games. “If you get a fastball in the zone, you gotta put a good swing on it no matter how many strikes you have,” Snider said. Moment No. 9: Nick Leyva holds up Russell Martin. Relievers Bryan Morris, Justin Wilson, Tony Watson and Mark Melancon held the Dodgers hitless and scoreless for five innings, and the opportunity to snatch the victory arrived in the 10th. With two outs, Martin drew a six-pitch walk off Chris Moylan. Then Walker pulled a pitch down the right-field line. Here comes Martin around second base with Puig and his already notorious arm heading for the baseball. Third base coach Nick Leyva throws up the stop sign. Puig’s throw is hard but misses the cutoff man and ends up halfway down the third-base line. The Pirates might have won. “You can’t tell the ball is going over [the first baseman's] head,” Hurdle said. “Where that catcher got the ball, I’m not sure Russell’s past him even when he gets there. I don’t know.” As it was, Puig’s arm was respected and Pedro Alvarez stranded two runners by grounding out. Moment No. 10: The End Vin Mazzaro allowed a leadoff double to Andre Ethier (his game-high third hit) then two more hits that allowed the Dodgers to build a two-run lead in the 11th for closer Brandon League. It wasn’t easy, though. Once again with a pair of infield singles and a wild pitch, the Bucs had the tying run in scoring position. But McCutchen grounded out and Sanchez flew out on a ball Schumaker had to hustle to grab. Great game, but game over.
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
RELATED ARTICLES

Report: Brandon Cumpton Will Start for Pirates on Saturday

Cumpton has posted a 3.31 ERA for Triple-A Indianapolis. Pitcher Brandon Cumpton will make Saturday’s start for the Pittsburgh Pirates, according to Chelsa Messinger, Sports Anchor for the NBC affiliate in Columbus, Georgia. Congrats to Former @GT_Baseball Pitcher Brandon Cumpton will make his major league debut on Saturday for the #Pirates — Chelsa Messinger (@ChelsaMessinger...

The Book on Brandon Cumpton

Brandon Cumpton will make his major league debut tomorrow. Earlier today we heard a report that Brandon Cumpton would be starting for the Pittsburgh Pirates on Saturday. Later, Clint Hurdle confirmed the report, which means it’s time for another installment of “The Book”. Or “The Book on”. I don’t know, I’ve only done this twice, and after the first time Phil Irwin...

Pirates Notebook: Why Brandon Cumpton Over Andy Oliver?

Brandon Cumpton faces Clayton Kershaw and the Dodgers for his MLB debut. Brandon Cumpton makes his Major League debut for the Pirates on Saturday afternoon facing the Los Angeles Dodgers at PNC Park. If his promotion came as a surprise to Pittsburgh fans, it was even more surprising for Cumpton. “I was shocked. I had no idea,” Cumpton said Friday. “I didn’t see it coming...

Pirates Add Cumpton to 40-Man Roster; DFA Mike Zagurski

Mike Zagurski has been designated for assignment. (Photo by: David Hague) The Pittsburgh Pirates have added right-handed pitcher Brandon Cumpton to the 40-man roster for his start tonight. To make room, they have designated left-handed Mike Zagurski for assignment. The DFA of Zagurski also clears a spot for Cumpton on the 25-man roster. The DFA of Zagurski doesn’t come as a surprise...

Brandon Cumpton survives first start but Pittsburgh Pirates fall in extra innings

Brandon Cumpton Neil Walker and Travis Snider helped the Pittsburgh Pirates come from behind and forced extra innings, but Vin Mazzaro surrendered 2 runs in the 11th inning that allowed the Dodgers to knock off the Pirates 5-3. Brandon Cumpton was not expected to move mountains in his spot start for the Pirates, but he gave them a chance to beat Clayton Kershaw and the Dodgers on...

Brandon Cumpton Used Andrew W.K.'s "Party Hard" As Walk-Up Music

On Saturday, the Pirates called up AAA pitcher Brandon Cumpton to make a start against the Los Angeles Dodgers. Adding another pitcher was huge, seeing that the starting rotation was slowly settling in with super-rook Gerrit Cole making his vaunted debut earlier in the week. Cumpton one-upped his more-highly-lauded teammate in the strikeout department, striking out the side in the...

Pirates Call Up Brandon Cumpton – Will Start Against Dodgers

Brandon Cumpston‘s minor league contract has been purchased by the Pittsburgh Pirates and he is expected to start Saturday’s game against the Los Angeles Dodgers. Cumpton is not considered a high prospect, ranking 25th in the Pirate’s organization, but the 24-year-old has been solid for AAA Indianapolis, tossing a 3.31 ERA and 1.24 WHIP in 66 AAA innings.The Pirates are off...

First Pitch: Locke’s Anti-Regression, Cumpton a Bonus, and Jamestown

I didn’t have one specific thing I wanted to write about, but a few notes I was thinking about. So I went with more of a notes column, with three different topics below. Jeff Locke hasn’t regressed, but instead has improved his game. **About a month ago we were talking about Jeff Locke being a regression candidate going forward. That sparked the usual responses of “what if...

Comin’ Straight Outta Cumpton

Word is that Brandon Cumpton will make his major league debut tomorrow.  I’m not sure who won the race for that hashtag but we’re giving credit to The Angry Fan credit. It’s certainly the best and surely what I’ll be using on Twitter. If you want to be one of the cool kids you’d better…

Pirates Notebook: Projecting Rotation with Burnett Out, Cumpton In

Clint Hurdle confirmed Brandon Cumpton will make his MLB debut Saturday afternoon. Let’s review the Pirates’ scheduled starting rotation following the news that Brandon Cumpton will take the place of injured A.J. Burnett. Dodgers Series Friday: Jeff Locke Saturday: Brandon Cumpton (MLB Debut) Sunday: Gerrit Cole Reds Series Monday: Francisco Liriano Tuesday: Charlie Morton...

Pittsburgh Pirates vs. Los Angeles Dodgers – Game 69

Brandon Cumpton kept the Pirates in the game, that’s all he needed to do.  The Pirates just didn’t have the ball bounce their way.  A great catch, a misplayed ball by Alex Presley, one more bobble with a man at third and this game is very, very different.  It’s all gravy if they win today.…

Dodgers 5, Pirates 3

The Pirates fell to the Dodgers in a wild, wild game on Saturday afternoon, evening this weekend’s series. Brandon Cumpton immediately caught everyone’s attention with an incredible start to his big league debut. The righty isn’t known as a big strikeout guy, but he went right at the Dodgers and struck out all three batters in the first inning – then tacked on two more in...

Game 69 Preview: Pirates vs. Dodgers

Dodgers (29-38) at Pirates (40-28) 1:35 PM–PNC Park, Pittsburgh MLB.com Gameday TV: ROOT, TBS The Bucs and Dodgers battle in a rubber match this afternoon on a rainy Father’s Day in Pittsburgh. Pregame news: Brandon Cumpton will start again on Thursday, his next scheduled turn in the rotation. Starling Marte is still out. Russell Martin was scratched with a lower body injury...

Daily Notes: Saturday’s Games, Rated for Watchability

Table of Contents Here’s the table of contents for today’s edition of the Daily Notes. 1. Today’s Notable Games 2. Today’s MLB.TV Free Game 3. Today’s Complete Schedule Today’s Notable Games Los Angeles NL at Pittsburgh | 16:05 ET Clayton Kershaw (100.1 IP, 83 xFIP-, 2.6 WAR) faces Brandon Cumpton (N/A). The latter makes his major-league debut in place of the injured...

Forging ahead

For at least the next turn or two, the Pirates' rotation is going to look something like this: Jeff Locke, Brandon Cumpton, Gerrit Cole, Francisco Liriano, Charlie Morton. This is pretty far from what anyone thought the rotaiton would look like in mid-June. That includes Charlie Morton and Brandon Cumpton, I think. And yet, here we are. Despite this avalanche of injuries, the...
Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.