Friday, September 26, 2008

Game 159: Brewers 5 Pirates 1

When you watch enough baseball, things slow during the game. I don't mean that the games get longer, I mean that you recognize little things that would be imperceptible to other people. Take, for example, the pitch thrown by Jesse Chavez to Ryan Braun that Braun walloped for a walk-off grand slam in the bottom of the tenth. As the ball left Chavez's hand and travelled to the plate, I could see the pitch was a fastball and immediately knew that Braun would crush the ball and end the game. I don't even know if it's actually POSSIBLE to diagnose a pitch like that, but that's what I'm fairly certain happened in the tenth tonight. Of course, anyone who thought that Chavez was getting out of that inning belongs at Arkham, so maybe that line of thinking influenced me.

Anyways, anecdotal prognostications aside, tonight was a really interesting game. In fact, I think it's fair to say that it was about as interesting as Pirate games get in late August. Yovani Gallardo made a rather triumphant return to the mound tonight, whiffing 7 Pirates in four innings and only giving up a home run to Steve Pearce. Which is also why the game was interesting. Pearce managed to hit his second homer in three games and Zach Duke pitched a solid seven innings tonight to keep things tied at one. Eventually the bullpen gave out, which was inevitable, but it was still an interesting game to watch and that's all I really ask for anymore.

UPDATE: With the prompting of the comments, I've looked up the pitch Chavez threw to Braun for the grannie on PitchFX. It was, in fact, a slider and not a fastball. A slider that had less movement on it than his fastball. So really, it was actually a slower, straighter fastball than his fastball. So I'm only kind of a total idiot.