for this game

Pirates sweep Astros for second time this season

Apr 26, 2007 - 9:35 PM PITTSBURGH (Ticker) -- The Pittsburgh Pirates recovered better from a marathon than the Houston Astros.

Tony Armas pitched into the sixth inning and Jason Bay delivered a two-run single as the Pirates completed a three-game sweep of the struggling Houston Astros with a 5-3 victory.

Pittsburgh improved to 6-0 against Houston this season, also sweeping a three-game set to start the year.

"It's really good to sweep them, that's for sure," Pirates manager Jim Tracy said. "To win three, and we played a good game today. We got a couple of huge hits, two-strike hits."

In the middle game of the series that lasted into early Thursday morning, the Pirates needed nearly five hours before emerging with a 4-3 victory in 16 innings.

"The legs were a little heavy but both teams went through it," Bay said. "We did it last year, too, as I recall, so it's not ideal but, hey, when you come out of it with wins in both, it doesn't really matter."

Needing a big effort from Armas to take some pressure off their weary bullpen, the Pirates got barely enough from Armas, who had been awful in losing his first two starts.

Armas gave up one run and six hits, walking four and striking out four in five-plus innings. The righthander threw 72 of 113 pitches for strikes, departing with the Bucs trailing 1-0. The outing was far different for Armas than in his first two starts when he gave up 14 runs and 15 hits in 6 2/3 innings.

"What can I say? After all that time without pitching, I think the only think it did was I don't feel as strong as I can be," Armas said. "But it's building up, and this time was better than last time."

Jonah Bayliss helped pick up Armas. After entering with the bases load in the sixth, the righthander got Brad Ausmus to pop out before getting pitcher Wandy Rodriguez to ground into an inning-ending double play.

"Coming into the game with the bases loaded, nobody out, in a sick and twisted way, it's what us relievers live for," Bayliss said. "When you shut them down, that's probably the ultimate adrenaline rush."

Bayliss (2-1) gave up two hits in two scoreless innings for the win.

The Pirates cashed in on Bayliss getting out of the jam by scoring twice in the bottom of the sixth.

Jose Castillo led off with a single and Chris Duffy walked. After Jack Wilson lined out, Freddy Sanchez reached on third baseman Mike Lamb's error.

Bay came through by depositing a 1-2 pitch from Rodriguez into right field for a single to plate two runs and give the Pirates a 2-1 lead.

The Pirates added three runs in the eighth to build a 5-1 lead.

Xavier Nady was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded and Ryan Doumit, recalled from the minors earlier Thursday, delivered a two-run single.

Doumit was summoned from Class AAA Indianapolis after catcher Humberto Cota landed on the 15-day disabled list.

Entering with a 5-1 lead in the ninth, Pirates closer Salomon Torres managed to make things interesting, allowing two walks and a single that loaded the bases with one out.

Slugger Carlos Lee lofted a sacrifice fly to pull the Astros within 5-2.

With two on and two out, John Grabow - activated from the DL on Wednesday - came on and surrendered a run-scoring single to Lamb, who had three hits.

Grabow then walked Morgan Ensberg to load the bases before getting Adam Everett to bounce into a forceout to end it, securing his second career save and first since 2004.

Rodriguez (0-3) pitched well but still lost for the third time in four starts after allowing two runs and five hits in seven innings. The lefthander walked two and struck out seven, throwing 71 of 101 pitches for strikes.

"I was concentrating not on throwing hard but on locating all the pitches where I wanted to throw them," Rodriguez said through an interpreter.

The Astros took the lead in the first. Chris Burke led off with a hard single, Mark Loretta reached on an infield hit and Lance Berkman lofted a sacrifice fly.

Loretta had four hits for the Astros, who stranded 13 runners in losing their sixth straight game.

"Another day with a lot of people left on base," Astros manager Phil Garner said. "Still having trouble coming up with the big hit. We started out the first inning, it looked like it was going to be a pretty good day for us but we just didn't get it going obviously."








  • NL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    HOUSTON 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 3 10 2
    PITTSBURGH 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 3 x 5 7 0 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: HOU - WANDY RODRIGUEZ, CHAD QUALLS (8TH), STEPHEN RANDOLPH (8TH) AND
    BRAD AUSMUS, HUMBERTO QUINTERO (8TH)
    PIT - TONY ARMAS, JONAH BAYLISS (6TH), MATT CAPPS
    (8TH),

    Apr 26 3:42 PM


  • NL
    AT PITTSBURGH - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY MIKE LAMB SCORED MARK LORETTA.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, M LAMB ON FIRST, L BERKMAN ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: HOUSTON 3
    PITTSBURGH 5 TOP, 9TH
    DUE UP FOR HOUSTON: S RANDOLPH (.000, 0 HR, 0 RBI)

    Astros vs. PiratesApr 26 3:38 PM


  • NL
    AT PITTSBURGH - SCORING UPDATE
    SACRIFICE FLY BY CARLOS LEE SCORED CHRIS BURKE.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, L BERKMAN ON FIRST, M LORETTA ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: HOUSTON 2
    PITTSBURGH 5 TOP, 9TH
    DUE UP FOR HOUSTON: M LAMB (.318, 2-FOR-4)

    Astros vs. PiratesApr 26 3:35 PM


  • NL
    AT PITTSBURGH - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY RYAN DOUMIT SCORED JACK WILSON AND JASON BAY.
    SITUATION: 3 RUNS IN, R DOUMIT ON FIRST, I SNELL ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: HOUSTON 1
    PITTSBURGH 5 BOTTOM, 8TH
    DUE UP FOR PITTSBURGH: N MCLOUTH (.300, 0-FOR-1)

    Astros vs. PiratesApr 26 3:20 PM


  • NL
    AT PITTSBURGH - SCORING UPDATE
    XAVIER NADY HIT BY CHAD QUALLS PITCH WITH BASES LOADED
    SCORED CHRIS DUFFY.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, X NADY ON FIRST, J BAY ON SECOND, J WILSON
    ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: HOUSTON 1
    PITTSBURGH 3 BOTTOM, 8TH
    DUE UP FOR PITTSBURGH: A LAROCHE (.116, 1-FOR-3)

    Astros vs. PiratesApr 26 3:15 PM


  • NL
    AT PITTSBURGH - MID INNING UPDATE
    PLAY: N McLouth hit for J Bayliss.
    SITUATION: 0 RUNS IN, NONE ON, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: HOUSTON 1
    PITTSBURGH 2 BOTTOM, 7TH
    DUE UP FOR PITTSBURGH: N McLouth (.316, 1 HR, 2 RBI)

    Apr 26 2:50 PM


  • NL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    HOUSTON 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 7 2
    PITTSBURGH 0 0 0 0 0 2 2 5 0 (BOT 7)

    CURRENT PITCHERS: HOU - WANDY RODRIGUEZ
    PIT - JONAH BAYLISS

    DUE UP FOR PITTSBURGH: R DOUMIT (.200, 1-FOR-2)
    J BAYLISS (.000, 0 HR, 0 RBI)
    J CASTILLO (.179, 1-FOR-1)

    Apr 26 2:47 PM


  • NL
    AT PITTSBURGH - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY JASON BAY SCORED JOSE CASTILLO AND CHRIS DUFFY.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, J BAY ON FIRST, F SANCHEZ ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: HOUSTON 1
    PITTSBURGH 2 BOTTOM, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR PITTSBURGH: B ELDRED (.120, 0-FOR-2)

    Astros vs. PiratesApr 26 2:35 PM


  • NL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    HOUSTON 1 0 0 0 1 3 0
    PITTSBURGH 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 (TOP 5)

    CURRENT PITCHERS: HOU - WANDY RODRIGUEZ
    PIT - TONY ARMAS

    DUE UP FOR HOUSTON: W RODRIGUEZ (.143, 0-FOR-1)
    C BURKE (.232, 1-FOR-2)
    M LORETTA (.324, 2-FOR-2)

    Apr 26 1:44 PM


  • NL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    HOUSTON 1 0 1 2 0
    PITTSBURGH 0 0 0 0 (BOT 2)

    CURRENT PITCHERS: HOU - WANDY RODRIGUEZ
    PIT - TONY ARMAS

    DUE UP FOR PITTSBURGH: J BAY (.267, 3 HR, 12 RBI)
    B ELDRED (.130, 2 HR, 3 RBI)
    A LAROCHE (.106, 3 HR, 9 RBI

    Apr 26 1:06 PM


  • NL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    HOUSTON 1 1 2 0
    PITTSBURGH 0 0 0 (BOT 1)

    CURRENT PITCHERS: HOU - WANDY RODRIGUEZ
    PIT - TONY ARMAS

    DUE UP FOR PITTSBURGH: C DUFFY (.297, 1 HR, 4 RBI)
    J WILSON (.296, 1 HR, 4 RBI)
    F SANCHEZ (.250, 0 HR, 4 RBI

    Astros vs. PiratesApr 26 12:50 PM