Monday, April 09, 2007

Game 7: Cardinals 3 Pirates 0

I was prepared for lots of things on a 35 degree day at PNC Park. Just about everything, I thought. One thing I was not prepared for today: seven shutout innings by Braden Looper, then Ryan Franklin and Jason Isringhausen completing the shutout. I mean, Braden Looper? Seriously?

OK, moving along, Snell didn't really seem to have his best stuff today, but he still shut down the Cardinals over 7 innings. He only struck out one three (one through six, then two in the seventh), but it seemed from center field that only Pujols hit the ball hard off of him all afternoon. He did a good job saving himself in the cold, only cranking it up to 94 or 95 when he really needed. I suppose what I'm saying is that he really pitched a good game, as opposed to just trying to throw the ball by people, which he's been prone to do in the past (see: that huge homer total from last year).

Still, Snell could've given up no runs today and it would've been too many. Chris Duffy was the only Pirate that got any kind of wood on the ball the whole game today. I know it was cold out, but three hits against Looper, Franklin, and Isringhausen is pretty bad (though admittedly, Isringhausen looked better than last year). I don't even know what to say, really? LaRoche looks clueless at the plate in person, kind of like he's never seen a baseball before. It's too early to start piling on guys, but I'm a little more concerned now.

Two other things of note: Jason Bay batted fifth today. That is a bad idea. I don't like to harp on the lineup, but Bay shouldn't be fifth and Bautista shouldn't be eighth. Also, John Wasdin is not an eighth inning guy in a one run game. Ever. He didn't fool anyone today and quickly turned what was a manageable deficit into game over (Damaso Marte helped a lot by allowing Preston Wilson to double in the two runners Wasdin put on base). Seriously, just pretend like he's Ryan Vogelsong and move on.

Another encouraging home opener in Pittsburgh. Blech.