for this game

Snell pitches Pirates past Dodgers

Jun 3, 2007 - 4:41 AM PITTSBURGH (Ticker) -- The Pittsburgh Pirates started strong and Ian Snell made it stand up.

Powered by a two-run first inning and Snell's eight strong innings, the Pirates topped the Los Angeles Dodgers, 3-1, Saturday night.

The Pirates led off their half of the first inning with three consecutive singles by Jose Bautista, Chris Duffy and Freddy Sanchez off Dodgers starter Hong-Chih Kuo to take a 1-0 lead.

After a flyout by Jason Bay, Kuo hit Xavier Nady with a pitch to load the bases and then walked Adam LaRoche, forcing home Duffy to make it 2-0.

"In that first inning he was just eaten up with some bad luck," Los Angeles manager Grady Little said of Kuo. "I was kind of glad he didn't buy my Powerball tickets today. If he did, I wouldn't even need to check them in the morning."

Kuo got out of the first inning without further damage when Ronny Paulino flied out to Andre Ethier, who then threw out Sanchez at the plate for a double play.

But that was enough run support for Snell (5-4), who tossed eight innings, surrendering six hits, two walks and one run while fanning six in getting his first win since May 18.

"I mixed a lot pitches in tonight but I was throwing more sinkers than I have been this whole year," Snell said. "And I got a lot of ground balls this game. It's a good sign for me because I never really developed the sinker but tonight I did."

Little noted that Snell made life difficult on the Dodgers' hitters.

"This guy was tough," Little said of Snell. "That was some of the better stuff we've seen from a starter all season long, from the first inning all the way 'til he was done. He made some awfully good pitches out there and mixed his pitches good and all four of them were real quality."

The Dodgers' lone run came in the second. Snell hit Mike Lieberthal with a pitch and Lieberthal took second on a wild pitch. Lieberthal scored one batter later when rookie Tony Abreu lined a double down the first base line.

Los Angeles' best chance to score more runs came in the seventh, when Ethier hit a one-out single and Abreu followed with a double, putting runners at second and third. But Snell struck out both pinch-hitter Wilson Betemit and Juan Pierre to retire the side.

Little lamented the fact that Los Angeles could not take advantage of the opportunity.

"We had a good opportunity (in the seventh) and nothing happened," Little said. "That was a pivotal point in the game."

"One of the special qualities that Ian Snell has is as he is closer and closer to the finish line, he starts to sense it, he starts to smell it and you see a different gear from the guy," Pittsburgh manager Jim Tracy said. "That's a quality you can't teach. That's a determination on the part of the individual."

New closer Matt Capps tossed a perfect ninth to pick up his first save since being named the Pirates' closer before Friday's game.

"It felt good to get it out of the way," Capps said. "When I got out on the mound, everything felt the same - it's just throwing an inning. To get the first one under your belt is a good feeling."

In his first start of the season and just the sixth of his brief career, Kuo settled down after that rocky first, allowing just two hits the rest of the way. He lasted 4 2/3 innings, giving up five hits, two walks and two runs to go with three strikeouts.

Kuo (0-1) was called up after Friday's game when the Dodgers optioned Andy LaRoche back to Class AAA Las Vegas.

"The first inning I was maybe overthrowing and then getting behind in the count, but after the first inning I felt fine," Kuo said.

The Pirates' third run came when Nady led off the Pirates' sixth with a solo home run to center field off of Brett Tomko. It was Nady's eighth homer of the season.

"I haven't necessarily been seeing the ball all that well and I was just more or less happy to make good contact and have a good at-bat," Nady said.

Meanwhile Abreu had another strong game for the Dodgers with three hits and an RBI. In his past three games he is 6-for-10 with four RBI and six runs.

Bautista had three hits for the Pirates, who snapped their three-game losing skid.








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

    BATTERIES: LOS - HONG-CHIH KUO, BRETT TOMKO (5TH), RUDY SEANEZ (7TH) AND MIKE
    LIEBERTHAL
    PIT - IAN SNELL, MATT CAPPS (9TH) AND RONNY PAULINO

    HOME RUNS: LOS - NONE
    PIT - XAVI

    Jun 2 9:42 PM


  • NL
    AT PITTSBURGH - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY XAVIER NADY (8) TO CENTER WITH 0 OUT IN
    THE 6TH OFF BRETT TOMKO.
    CURRENT SCORE: LA DODGERS 1, PITTSBURGH 3
    DUE UP FOR PITTSBURGH: A LAROCHE (.214, 0-FOR-1, BB, RBI)

    Dodgers vs. PiratesJun 2 8:51 PM


  • NL
    AT PITTSBURGH - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY TONY ABREU SCORED MIKE LIEBERTHAL.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, T ABREU ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: LA DODGERS 1
    PITTSBURGH 2 TOP, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR LA DODGERS: H KUO (.000, 0 HR, 0 RBI)

    Dodgers vs. PiratesJun 2 7:38 PM


  • NL
    AT PITTSBURGH - SCORING UPDATE
    BASES LOADED WALK TO ADAM LAROCHE SCORED CHRIS DUFFY.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, A LAROCHE ON FIRST, X NADY ON SECOND, F
    SANCHEZ ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: LA DODGERS 0
    PITTSBURGH 2 BOTTOM, 1ST
    DUE UP FOR PITTSBURGH: R PAULINO (.220, 4 HR, 20 RBI)

    Dodgers vs. PiratesJun 2 7:25 PM


  • NL
    AT PITTSBURGH - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY FREDDY SANCHEZ SCORED JOSE BAUTISTA.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, F SANCHEZ ON FIRST, C DUFFY ON THIRD, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: LA DODGERS 0
    PITTSBURGH 1 BOTTOM, 1ST
    DUE UP FOR PITTSBURGH: J BAY (.314, 9 HR, 41 RBI)

    Dodgers vs. PiratesJun 2 7:17 PM