Sunday, May 25, 2008

Game 49: Pirates 5 Cubs 4

Remember back in 2005 when there were games when it felt like Jason Bay picked the team up on his back and would win games singlehandedly? Tonight kind of felt like one of those nights. With Jason Marquis continuing his baffling (OK, it's not actually baffling) dominance of the Pirates, Bay walloped a homer to left field in the fourth. In the sixth, he scored on Jason Michaels' single. In the fourteenth, he singled in Freddy Sanchez from third base with a rocket into the gap, sealing up the Pirates' second win against the Cubs in 11 tries this year. All in all, he was 4-for-6 with 2 runs scored and three RBIs on a night when the rest of the team accounted for one run and 9 hits in 14 innings. It really seems pretty likely to me that Jason Bay is back.

Of course, in order for Bay's hits to be meaningful, the pitching staff had to come through and besides Tyler Yates, they did a nice job in this one. Dumatrait went into the sixth with his weekly tightrope act and Matt Capps and John Grabow pitched three shutout innings apiece (Capps needing only 32 pitches), meaning that a game that could've nuked the Pirates' bullpen actually only used six guys.

Being a guy that's been to more than his share of Pirates/Cubs games in PNC (and one incredibly hungover breakfast at Eat 'N Park in Robinson) where Cubs' fans have overrun the park, it's really great to see the Pirates sneak this win out in front of a crowd that, from what I could tell on TV, was probably more Chicago fans than Pirate fans. It's not that I have a particular disdain for Cubs' fans, but you gotta protect the house every once in a while. And seriously, who doesn't love a win in a game that goes beyond the 12th inning?