Pirates-Mets: McCutchen Debuts Well; Pittsburgh Sweeps NY

Brian WolffCorrespondent IJune 5, 2009

BRADENTON, FL - MARCH 8: Andrew McCutchen #76 of the Pittsburgh Pirates stands ready at bat during a Spring Training game against the Tampa Bay Devil Rays on March 8, 2007 at McKechnie Field in Bradenton, Florida. Pittsburgh won the game 5-2. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

The Pirates shook off the shock of the Nate McLouth trade long enough to complete the sweep of the New York Mets at home on Thursday.

Ross Ohlendorf had problems early and needed a lot of help from the offense.

In the first inning, the Pirates escaped a would-be run on what looked like a bad call on a runner out at first, just before a potential run scoring double by Carlos Beltran.

Leading off in the bottom of the first, Andrew McCutchen had his major league debut, singling on a belt-high sinker up the middle. Nyjer Morgan singled to right to follow, putting runners on the corners.

McCutchen was leading the International League at Indianapolis, hitting .303.

Morgan advanced on a grounder by Sanchez, and Adam LaRoche was walked to load the bases. Andy LaRoche then hit a shot just over the head of Alex Cora at short, scoring McCutchen and Morgan.

Brandon Moss followed with an infield grounder that was deflected by Mike Pelfrey, slowing it down just enough to allow all the runners to be safe.

Switch-hitting Jason Jaramillo came up with the bases loaded and lined a quick single, a sinker ball up, down the left field line, scoring the brothers LaRoche to make it 4-0.

Vazquez got a blooper single to load the bases again, however Ross Ohlendorf hit into a one-two-three double play to end the inning.

In the top of the second, David Wright got a leadoff walk and stole second on a bad throw from Jaramillo. Daniel Murphy singled to center, scoring Murphy. Fernando Martinez then singled to right, moving Murphy to third.

Omar Santos grounded into what would have been a double play, but Adam LaRoche got Murphy at home. Later in the inning, Cora doubled to right, scoring Martinez, Pelfrey to third.

Luis Castillo then reached on an infield single, scoring Pelfrey before Sheffield grounded out to end the inning, shortening the Pirates' lead to 4-3.

In the bottom of the second, Morgan hit a ball hard right at the first baseman Murphy who could not control the hit, and in a split second Morgan was on third with his speed, a two-base error.  Adam LaRoche hit a hard double to the left field corner, scoring Morgan.

In the top of the fourth, the Mets picked up another run on a solo homer by Carlos Beltran.The Pirates had a big fourth inning, getting a leadoff walk from McCuthen. A couple sacrifices by Morgan and Freddy Sanchez moved McCutchen to third.

Adam LaRoche then walked and Andy LaRoche caught a pitch right in the knee loading the bases.

Brandon Moss walked, scoring McCutchen from third. Jaramillo then singled right though the hole into left filed, scoring the LaRoches. The Mets pulled Pellfrey from the game at this point.

Ramon Vazquez singled to right, scoring Moss from third to make it 9-4 Pirates. Ohlendorf struck out to end the inning.

Vazquez was 4-for-4 on the game with all singles, penciled into the lineup at the last minute as Jack Wilson was pulled for a stomach virus.

A single by Wright and a double by Martinez and the Mets had another run on the board in the fifth.

In the seventh, the Pirates picked up a couple more runs. Vazquez singled and then stole second. A single by McCutchen scored Vazquez. Morgan followed with a triple to the gap in deep right-center, scoring McCutchen. It was Morgan's sixth triple on the season.

In the ninth inning, the Mets got another run on a walk, a wild pitch and a double by Wright, but the Pirates won 11-6.

In the series, the Pirates outscored the Mets 22-11, sweeping the three-game rain shortened series.

McCutchen was 2-for-4 with a run, an RBI and a stolen base in his major league debut.

Sanchez hit the ball hard all day, but was 0-for-5.

Steven Jackson, a recent pickup from the New York Yankees, continued to perform well pitching two scoreless innings and picking up the win. It was his first at the major league level.

The Pirates bullpen performed well in all three games of the series giving up one run on two hits over 9 2/3 innings of work.

Game One, Pirates 8-5

In the first game of the series, the Pirates needed to come back from a two-run deficit in the ninth, getting five runs to defeat the Mets 8-5.  The Pirates trailed 5-0 at one point.

Adam LaRoche led the way with three RBI. In the ninth, a double and four consecutive singles did the Mets in.

The Pirates' bullpen gave up a walk and a single over three innings of work, including Steven Jackson who pitched a socreless inning in his debut.

Game Two, Pirates 3-1

In the second game, the Pirates got just three runs on eight hits, but Zack Duke pitched well enough, giving up one run on eight hits over seven innings.

John Grabow and Matt Capps kept the Mets hitless, and the Pirates won 3-1.


    Where Can the Pirates Find Power?

    Pittsburgh Pirates logo
    Pittsburgh Pirates

    Where Can the Pirates Find Power?

    via The Sports Daily

    10 Players Whose Trade Stock Is on the Rise

    MLB logo

    10 Players Whose Trade Stock Is on the Rise

    via MLB

    How Some Pirates Broke the Language Barrier Early on

    Pittsburgh Pirates logo
    Pittsburgh Pirates

    How Some Pirates Broke the Language Barrier Early on

    Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
    via Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

    How Much Longer Will INova Be a Pirate?

    Pittsburgh Pirates logo
    Pittsburgh Pirates

    How Much Longer Will INova Be a Pirate?

    Steve Janik
    via The Sports Daily