Found June 02, 2013 on Pirates Prospects:
Russell Martin slides past catcher Devin Mesoraco to score the game-winning run in the 11th inning. (Photo Credit: David Hague) When PNC Park was built in 2001 along the North Shore of the Allegheny River, the Pirates erected a sign on the right-field wall to track how many home runs the Bucs would hit into the river on the fly. Twelve years later: 1. After the Pirates (35-22) missed chances to score all weekend long, Garrett Jones left. No doubt. Jones ripped a slider from Cincinnati Reds’ set-up man Jonathan Broxton inside and above the right-field foul pole, and the ball flew 463 feet to its watery grave. Tie game in the 8th inning and redemption for Jones after leaving two runners in scoring position his previous at-bat. Garrett Jones took this pitch into the Allegheny River, the first river shot on a fly in Pirates history. (Photo by: David Hague) “It was an anger, frustration swing,” Jones said. Jones’ river shot puts him in an exclusive club with Daryle Ward as the only players to homer into the Allegheny without a bounce during a regular season game. “That’s always a special thing and pretty cool to be a part of,” Jones said. “Hopefully [I get] a lot more.” But Jones’ aqua-seeking missile would have been in vain had it not been for the Pirates’ bullpen throwing 10 shutout innings (Jones called them “the players of the game”) in relief of Jeanmar Gomez’s one-and-done start, as well as Travis Snider hitting the walkoff single to give the Pirates a 5-4 win and avoid being swept by their division rival Reds (35-22). “You can’t express how valuable, great of a job they’re doing. They just kept us in the ballgame and we’re just able to scrape a few runs,” Jones said. “They’re doing an unbelievable job for us this year.” Jeanmar Looks Tight Jeanmar Gomez could not pitch past the first inning Sunday. (Photo by: David Hague) Gomez packed about three starts’ worth of regression into one inning. He hit Shin-Soo Choo to start then left a sinker down the middle for Zack Cosart to smack to the North Shore Notch for an RBI triple. After walking Joey Votto, Gomez served up three straight singles and long sacrifice fly to make it 4-0. Only a nicely-turned double play by Neil Walker and Jordy Mercer on Cesar Izturis stopped the steady floats of the Reds’ hit parade. Gomez knew he would not return “about two outs” into the bottom of the 1st as he tried to work through elbow tightness. The relievers had to be ready for a busy afternoon. “The bullpen guys have thrown quite a bit lately, said reliever Bryan Morris. “Obviously the worst-case scenario for today’s game was for Jeanmar to come out of the game early. But our job at that point is to get as many outs as fast as we can.” Bullpen To The Rescue Pirates manager Clint Hurdle inserted Vin Mazzaro. He gave up a walk and two singles right away, but the sinker-ball pitcher was bailed out by catcher Russell Martin throwing out Choo and ended up pitching three shutout innings. Bryan Morris’ pitch-to-contact style was successful and efficient. (Photo by: David Hague) “He’s never done that before… You get pushed into the opportunity,” Hurdle said. “[Vin] got better as the game went on, but he was drawing some things up in the dirt because he wasn’t completely rested.” Bryan Morris followed up with three scoreless, hitless innings of his own even though every batter put the ball into play. “My goal was to pitch to contact as early in the count as I could so I could go multiple innings,” Morris said. “That’s what we needed.” Then came the strikeout guys: Mark Melancon loaded the bases in the 8th with a walk and two hits, but escaped with his cutter by striking out Choo looking. Jason Grilli struck out Zack Cosart, Joey Votto and Jay Bruce, all on fastballs in the 9th. Justin Wilson struck out two more with his 96-mile-per-hour heat in the 10th then added a scoreless 11th to go to 5-0 on the season. Runners Left On The Pirates’ bullpen throwing 10 shutout innings reduced their Major League-best ERA to 2.67 on the season and provided the offense an opportunity for a comeback. Pedro Alvarez’s solo home run in the second inning took a bite out of Cincinnati’s initial four-run lead, but missed chances against Latos (6 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 7 K) ruled most of the game: 3rd inning: Mat Latos walks Starling Marte with two outs and Marte swipes second base. Next batter Neil Walker hits a hard line drive right at shortstop Zack Cosart for the third out. 6th inning: Leadoff hitter Alex Presley reaches base on an infield single up the middle, then Latos walks Marte again. Neil Walker strikes out, but Andrew McCutchen hits an RBI single to score Presley. A Latos wild pitch moves both Marte and McCutchen into scoring position. But Garrett Jones struck out swinging instead of putting the ball into play, and Russell Martin grounded out to strand the tying run at second base. 7th inning: Jordy Mercer reaches base with one out as Votto can’t handle a throw from third baseman Todd Frazier. When right-handed pinch-hitter Gaby Sanchez was announced, RHP J.J. Hoover entered the game and got both Sanchez and Presley to strike out looking and keep the Reds ahead 4-2. In the bottom of the 8th, Broxton hit Marte with a 1-2 fastball, but it was erased by Neil Walker grounding into a double play. It seemed like another opportunity lost, but McCutchen singled to extend the inning. Then Jones turned on a 2-1 slider from Broxton and sent it packing with a swimsuit. “It just felt like everything was on time,” Jones said. “One of those things you try to take on a consistent basis, having everything timed and smooth through the ball.” Then Came The Winner Travis Snider reached out and hit the walkoff single. (Photo by: David Hague) Grilli and Wilson kept the game tied into the bottom of the 11th. Reds reliever Alfredo Simon entered his third inning, despite closer Aroldis Chapman matching better against the two left-handed hitters due up. With one out, Russell Martin reached base on a poor throw by the shortstop Cozart and Alvarez drew a walk to move him to second. Then Jordy Mercer flew out. With two outs, the pressure was on Snider. Or was it? “If you put the pressure of the situation on you — I’m starting to learn with more experience from pinch-hitting, you just have to go take it one pitch at a time,” Snider said. “The more you try to do, the less results you’re gonna be on it.” Snider turned on Simon’s 0-1 low slider and looped it into right field. Jay Bruce’s throw to get Martin at home was wide up the third-base line. Game over. Sweep incomplete. “It’s a believable win,” Hurdle said. “A lot of people say ‘unbelievable.’ It’s a believable win.”

Garrett Jones hammers ball into Allegheny

Splash hits in San Francisco and Pittsburgh have become a pretty cool part of baseball. But while there have been 91 total homers hit into McCovey Cove on the fly since AT&T Park opened in 2000, there had been just one homer hit into the Allegheny River behind PNC Park during a game since its opening in 2001. On July 6, 2002, Daryle Ward of the Houston Astros smashed a ball out...

VIDEO: Garrett Jones hits ball into Allegheny River on the fly

Pittsburgh 1B Garrett Jones becomes the first Pirate to hit a home run into the Allegheny River on the fly on Sunday.  And it’s the first blast in over a decade to do so.  The shot almost took out two oblivious cyclists on the descent.  Watch the towering blast courtesy of Your browser does not support iframes. The only other player to clear all dry land on a blast...

Garrett Jones Launches 463-Foot Home Run Into Allegheny River

Garrett Jones has some power hitting capabilities and they were on display Sunday at Pittsburgh’s PNC Park. Garrett Jones who plays first base for the Pirates first baseman launched a massive 463-foot home run directly into the Allegheny River, which had only been done once prior. He’s the second hitter to ever launch a ball that landed in the river on the fly. Somehow the...

Pirates’ Garrett Jones Launches 463-Foot Home Run Into Allegheny River in Pittsburgh (Video)

AT&T Park in San Francisco is famous for its “splash hits,” with a total of 89 home runs landing in San Francisco Bay since the Giants’ home ballpark opened in 2000. PNC Park in Pittsburgh also borders a body of water, but a ball finding its way into the Allegheny River on the fly is a rarer occurrence. Pirates first baseman Garrett Jones joined that exclusive club Sunday...

Pittsburgh Pirates Garrett Jones river home run nearly hit a cyclist (Video)

Yesterday, Pirates outfielder Garrett Jones became one of the few players to hit a home run out of PNC Park in Pittsburgh and into the Allegheny River behind the stadium. Jones blast came in the 8th inning against the Cincinnati Reds and keep eye on the below GIF as a cyclist riding along the street nearly gets hit by the long ball: (Courtesy of SB Nation)

Pirates player hits home run out of ballpark, nearly hits a bicyclist

Pirates first baseman Garret Jones became only the second player ever to hit a home run ball out of PNC Park and into the Allegheny River. The eighth inning 2-run shot, which traveled a reported 468 feet, nearly took out a bicyclist on its way to the water. The only other blast to reach Allegheny River was by Daryle Ward of the Astros in 2002.  Pittsburgh would eventually win...

Has Russell Martin been the Best Free Agent Signing?

You get the sense with this Pirates team that something is different. Russell Martin has been a vital part of the Pirates success so far in 2013. (Photo by: David Hague) Sure, Pittsburgh has been rattling off wins at a near-record pace and appears poised to battle with St. Louis and Cincinnati all summer for positioning in the National League Central with the prospect of spot in...

Umpire ejects Pirates catcher Russell Martin with minimal provocation (GIF)

During Monday’s game between the Pittsburgh Pirates and Atlanta Braves, home plate umpire Dan Iassogna, apparently with an extremely itchy trigger finger, ejected Pirates catcher Russell Martin despite the fact that it appears Martin barely said anything — if anything at all — to warrant the heave-ho. After relinquishing the lead earlier in the inning [...]The post Umpire ejects...

Pirates 5, Reds 4(11)

Garrett Jones is a level-headed guy. Even he gets mad sometimes. He was upset when he stepped into the batters' box in the eighth inning Sunday after striking out with runners on second and third in his previous at-bat. Jones then unleashed his anger by hitting a 463-foot game-tying home run Travis Snider then hit an RBI single with two outs in the 11th inning and the Pirates...

Russell Martin is playing the outfield tonight

When the Pirates called up two pitchers yesterday and made one of the corresponding moves the demotion of a postion player, the little voice in my head said, "Oh no, we're going to see some weird things this week." With the lefty Mike Minor on the mound tonight, we're seeing Russell Martin in right field.  I could list a million reasons that this is crazy ...

Pirates' Martin, Hurdle tossed from game

Pittsburgh catcher Russell Martin and manager Clint Hurdle have been ejected from the Pirates' game against the Atlanta Braves. The ejections came after umpire Dan Iassogna called two balls on pitches from A.J. Burnett to Braves pitcher Kris Medlen in the fourth inning on Monday night. Burnett complained about the ball one call, and Iassogna stepped in front of the plate to...

Trot Times for June 2, 2013

Apologies for the Tater Trot Tracker being gone for a few days. I'm catching up on the trots right now. In the meantime, let's get right to Sunday's trots! Home Run of the Day: Garrett Jones, Pittsburgh Pirates - 23.16 seconds [video] With apologies to the monumental bat flip from David Ortiz above and the incredibly hot hitting from both Domonic Brown and...

Prospectus Q and A: Russell Martin and Ryan Hanigan by Ben Lindbergh

A video walkthrough of framing technique with two talented receivers.

First Pitch: Ten Things I Love About Baseball – Ump Show Edition

Tonight the Pittsburgh Pirates took on the Atlanta Braves in the first game of a three game series between two of the best teams in the National League. Kind of boring, right? Not exactly the type of game where you’re going for the teams. Fortunately, there was one thing that made the game watchable. The home plate umpire… Hold on a second. Let me look up his name. … Still...

Braves 7, Pirates 2

The Braves blasted their way past the Bucs to take game one of this week’s series in Atlanta, as A.J. Burnett suffered through his worst start of the season. It was clear early on that Burnett wasn’t happy with home plate ump Dan Iassogna’s strike zone (it definitely did appear to be tight), and he walked three hitters in the first four innings. The third walk was to Freddie...
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