Pirates backup catcher strikes out Brandon Belt in scoreless ninth inning of blowout loss
One of the small silver linings of a blowout loss is occasionally getting to see position players toe the rubber.
One such occurrence happened on Tuesday night when San Francisco mounted a 15-3 lead over Pittsburgh, prompting Pirates manager Clint Hurdle to call for his backup catcher, Erik Kratz. (Watch Kratz pitching above.)
Kratz only needed to complete one inning but he actually did quite well, striking Brandon Belt on a changeup to start the scoreless inning. Then he induced a pop fly and allowed two singles before getting the third out on another fly ball.
This is actually the 36-year-old Kratz's second relief appearance of the season (and his career) -- but for his second team. Kratz opened the season in Houston where he pitched one inning and allowed one earned run in April before getting released by the Astros in May.
Considering how Kratz's season began -- with a faceplant -- things are really on the up.