MLB

Cin
0
FINAL
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
R
H
E
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
6
1
1
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
x
1
4
0
TV:
Pit
1

McDonald helps Bucs blank Reds again

Share This Story

   
 

PITTSBURGH (AP)

Joe Beimel let the pitch go and thought ''uh-oh.''

The second the slider that didn't really slide left his hand with the bases loaded Tuesday, the Pittsburgh Pirates reliever waited for Cincinnati's Jay Bruce to find a way to come through.

MLB Buzz

HOT STOVE

Our experts bring you all latest news. Read MLB Buzz.

Only Bruce didn't. The slugger flailed miserably while striking out in the seventh inning as Pittsburgh's stellar bullpen preserved a 1-0 victory that kept the Pirates alone in first in the NL Central.

''If I would have made the pitch I wanted he would have fouled it off or blooped it over somebody's head or something,'' Beimel said. ''It just worked out where it was so bad he couldn't do anything with it.''

Bruce wasn't alone Tuesday night. The Reds were held scoreless for the second straight night as Pittsburgh posted consecutive shutouts for the first time since April 2009.

James McDonald, Beimel, Chris Resop and Joel Hanrahan combined on a six-hitter for the Pirates, who made sure their stunning rise to the top of the standings wasn't a one-day cameo.

McDonald (6-4) won for the first time in five starts, allowing four hits, striking out seven and walking three in 6 1/3 efficient innings before letting the relievers go to work.

''The bullpen has been the unsung hero for this team this year,'' McDonald said. ''They've come in in a lot of big situations and got the job done. Those guys picked me up tonight.''

IN FULL SWING

We've got all the action covered at MLB video central.

Mike Leake (8-5) yielded one run in six innings but couldn't stop the Reds (47-50) from dropping three games below .500 for the first time this season. They trail Pittsburgh by five games.

''It's frustrating because you know these are important games for us and we're playing good baseball, pitching well, keeping ourselves in games defensively,'' Cincinnati catcher Ryan Hanigan said. ''We just need to keep working for those hits.''

Pittsburgh's offense wasn't much better, managing just four hits, but the Pirates found a way to scratch out a run in the first while improving to 7-1 this season against the defending division champions.

''I don't know if we're pressing or not, we're just not getting it done, you know?'' Cincinnati manager Dusty Baker said. ''We're missing pitches, and that's what happens.''

The Pirates recorded two of their four hits in the first inning. Josh Harrison singled with one out, Neil Walker doubled to left and Harrison scored on Andrew McCutchen's groundout.

That one run was enough for McDonald, who earned his first win since beating Houston on June 16. The 26-year-old right-hander has steadily improved since a rough April and for a night found a way to avoid the control problems that have prevented him from working deep into games.

CLASS OF 2011

Meet the latest group to have the honor of calling themselves Hall of Famers.

McDonald got through the first six innings in a tidy 71 pitches, then handed it over to the bullpen when Cincinnati put together its best threat of the night.

''I was pitching to contact more this game, going along smoothly,'' McDonald said.

At least until things got bumpy in the seventh.

Miguel Cairo led off with a walk and moved to second on a sacrifice by Chris Heisey. Fred Lewis followed with a grounder to shortstop and beat the throw with a headfirst slide, putting runners on the corners. Hanigan then walked on four pitches to chase McDonald.

Beimel, who was lit up for three hits while recording two outs on Sunday, struck out Bruce with that unconventional slider before giving way to Resop.

The journeyman reliever has become a revelation this season and a specialist at what manager Clint Hurdle calls ''high leverage'' situations.

Latest baseball news

 

Ringolsby: Can Alice Cooper make fans care about the D-backs?

Whitlock: How the stats nerds are ruining sports for the rest of us.

Couch: Mariano's record is just a number, and a deceptive one.

 

Resop has inherited 45 baserunners this season, tops in the majors. He wasted little time getting Drew Stubbs to hit a slow dribbler to first to help the Pirates escape. He then walked off the field to a standing ovation from a sizable PNC Park crowd of 26,058 that is quickly warming to Pittsburgh's surprising rise to contention.

''It was electric,'' Hurdle said.

Resop followed with a perfect eighth inning before Hanrahan, appearing in his third straight game, allowed a pair of singles before getting Bruce to ground out to second to notch his 28th save.

''It's been awesome to watch and be a part of,'' Resop said.

While the Pirates have surged, the Reds have sagged. Cincinnati hasn't won consecutive games in over a month while slowly sliding to the rear of the four-team Central race.

When the Reds hit, they don't pitch that well, and on a night when Leake was as sharp as he's been all season, Cincinnati's bats went silent.

The Reds have left 18 men on base in the first two games of the three-game series.

''We had some runners on base early in the game and we just couldn't get that hit,'' Baker said. ''This is frustrating when you're not scoring runs.''

NOTES: Walker extended his hitting streak to 13 games. ... Cincinnati rookie SS Zack Cozart went hitless in four at bats, ending a seven-game hitting streak to start his career ... Cincinnati 3B Scott Rolen sat for a second straight game to deal with soreness in his right shoulder. ... Pittsburgh SS Chase d'Arnaud was given the night off after tweaking his neck while sliding into third base on Monday night. Hurdle expects d'Arnaud to return as early as Wednesday.

Tagged: Reds, Pirates, Joe Beimel, Chris Resop, Jay Bruce

Related Stories

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by



MLB Videos

Bautista talks Derek Jeter's final All-Star Game Posted: Jul 16, 2014
Jose Bautista discusses Derek Jeter's career and his final appearance in the MLB...

Jeter honored to play in last All-Star Game Posted: Jul 16, 2014
Derek Jeter compares his first All-Star Game experience with his last, Mike Trou...

Matheny defends Wainwright: He's out there to compete Posted: Jul 16, 2014
Mike Matheny comments on the media's reaction to Adam Wainwright's joke about le...

SimLeague Baseball - Simulation Baseball Game

More Than Sports on MSN

Fox Sports Store

    itemName itemURL imageSrc price itemDescription
    Nike New York Yankees Practice T-Shirt - Ash http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_New_York_Yankees/browse/featuredproduct/606363/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_606000/ff_606363_xl.jpg&w=100 27.95 Nike New York Yankees Practice T-Shirt - Ash
    Majestic Detroit Tigers 2012 MLB American League Champions Clubhouse Locker Room T-Shirt - Navy Blue http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Detroit_Tigers/browse/featuredproduct/1064043/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1064000/ff_1064043_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Majestic Detroit Tigers 2012 MLB American League Champions Clubhouse Locker Room..
    Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker Room T-Shirt - Gray http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Francisco_Giants/browse/featuredproduct/1067359/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1067000/ff_1067359_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker R..
    Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker Room Pullover Hoodie - Steel http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Francisco_Giants/browse/featuredproduct/1067382/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1067000/ff_1067382_xl.jpg&w=100 54.95 Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker R..
    New Era San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker Room 39THIRTY Flex Hat - Charcoal/Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Francisco_Giants/browse/featuredproduct/1067785/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1067000/ff_1067785_xl.jpg&w=100 31.95 New Era San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker Ro..
    Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Glory T-Shirt - Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Francisco_Giants/browse/featuredproduct/1068294/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1068000/ff_1068294_xl.jpg&w=100 21.95 Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Glory T-Shirt - Bl..
    Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Batting Practice Performance Jersey - Black/Orange http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Francisco_Giants/browse/featuredproduct/1068787/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1068000/ff_1068787_xl.jpg&w=100 94.95 Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Batting Practice P..