for this game

Pirates outslug Astros to complete road sweep

Jul 23, 2008 - 11:08 PM By Ted Dunham PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

HOUSTON (Ticker) -- Doug Mientkiewicz perfect effort at the plate captured a first for the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Mientkiewicz had four hits in as any at-bats, including the go-ahead single in the seventh inning, as Pittsburgh battled past the Houston Astros, 8-7, on Wednesday.

Pittsburgh completed its first three-game sweep on the road this season, winning at Minute Maid Park for the ninth time in their last 12 games here.

Despite scoring four runs in the first inning, including a two-run homer by Jason Bay, and one in each subsequent frame, Pittsburgh found itself tied 6-6 at the start of the fifth after Houston All-Star Lance Berkman delivered an RBI single in the bottom of the fourth.

However, the Pirates took the lead again behind Mientkiewicz, who knocked in his second run of the game with a single in the seventh.

Ryan Doumit started the seventh with a single to center field and, one out later, Xavier Nady delivered a base hit to left. Adam LaRoche walked to load the bases before Mientkiewicz singled to right for a 7-6 score.

Pinch hitter Jason Michaels added an additional run on a ground out.

"It seemed like we never had enough runs - we didn't (keep scoring) in Colorado," Mientkiewicz said. "We needed these three bad. Earlier in the year, we just threw our hats out there for that third game.

"I thought we did a good job of jumping on their guy (Brian Moehler) early."

Pittsburgh reliever Franquelis Osoria (4-3) earned the win, working a scoreless fifth and sixth inning. Damaso Marte collected his fifth save by pitching a scoreless ninth.

Berkman was none too pleased with the Astros' performance, as they dropped to 2-4 since the All-Star break.

"What can you say when you get swept by the Pirates?," Berkman said. "Right now, we have all the earmarks of being a bad team.

"I'm not saying that we can't come out of it, but all you can say now is that we're bad."

The Pirates took a 4-0 lead in the first, highlighted by Bay's two-run homer. Doumit's sacrifice fly scored Nate McLouth for the team's first run and starting pitcher Ian Snell added an RBI single to cap the strong start.

Houston responded with three runs in the bottom of the inning, as Mark Loretta delivered a two-run single after Kazuo Matsui walked, Michael Bourn singled and Berkman drew a base on balls to start. Berkman later scored on a ground out by Hunter Pence to cut the Astros deficit to 4-3.

Freddy Sanchez delivered an RBI single in the second for Pittsburgh and Mientkiewicz doubled home another run in the third as the Pirates opened a 6-4 lead.

Houston's Geoff Geary (2-2) took the loss, giving up two runs and three hits in two innings of relief. He had gone 13 2/3 scoreless frames in his previous eight appearances in July.

Pittsburgh starter Ian Snell was ineffective in three innings, giving up five runs and six hits.

"I've just got to pitch better. Everything is back to normal," Snell said. "I've just got to execute my pitches.

"I let the game speed up on me. I wasn't really focused. I was just trying to throw the ball wherever, and I let my team down. I was just not locating my pitches."

Fortunately, Mientkiewicz was there to bail out the Pirates' pitching staff.

"To keep coming back every time was nice to see," Mientkiewicz said. "I was just trying to keep the line moving.

"As bad as I felt in Colorado ... (hitting coach Donnie Long) saw some things and J.R. (manager John Russell) saw some things, but being as dumb as I am, it took me three days to figure it out."








  • NL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    PITTSBURGH 4 1 1 0 0 0 2 0 0 8 14 0
    HOUSTON 3 1 1 1 0 0 1 0 0 7 11 1 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: PIT - IAN SNELL, T.J. BEAM (4TH), FRANQUELIS OSORIA (5TH), TYLER
    YATES (7TH), JOHN GRABOW (7TH), DAMASO MARTE (9TH) AND RYAN
    DOUMIT
    HOU - BRIAN MOEHLER, CHRIS SAMP

    Jul 23 5:31 PM


  • NL
    AT HOUSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY GEOFF BLUM SCORED MARK LORETTA.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, G BLUM ON FIRST, T WIGGINTON ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: PITTSBURGH 8
    HOUSTON 7 BOTTOM, 7TH
    DUE UP FOR HOUSTON: G GEARY (.000, 0 HR, 0 RBI)

    Pirates 8, Astros 7  Bot 7, 0 OutsJul 23 4:59 PM
  • 45
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 35 roots (Close Finish)

    Pirates 8, Astros 7  Bot 7, 0 OutsJul 23 4:59 PM


  • NL
    AT HOUSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    FIELDER'S CHOICE BY JASON MICHAELS SCORED XAVIER NADY.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, J MICHAELS ON FIRST, A LAROCHE ON THIRD, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: PITTSBURGH 8
    HOUSTON 6 TOP, 7TH
    DUE UP FOR PITTSBURGH: JA WILSON (.276, 0-FOR-3)

    Pirates 8, Astros 6  Top 7, 0 OutsJul 23 4:38 PM


  • NL
    AT HOUSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY DOUG MIENTKIEWICZ SCORED RYAN DOUMIT.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, D MIENTKIEWICZ ON FIRST, A LAROCHE ON
    SECOND, X NADY ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: PITTSBURGH 7
    HOUSTON 6 TOP, 7TH
    DUE UP FOR PITTSBURGH: F OSORIA (.400, 0 HR, 1 RBI)

    Pirates 7, Astros 6  Top 7, 0 OutsJul 23 4:36 PM
  • 10
    roots
    McTool Added 5 roots

    Pirates 6, Astros 6  Bot 4, 0 OutsJul 23 3:54 PM


  • NL
    AT HOUSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY LANCE BERKMAN SCORED KAZ MATSUI.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, L BERKMAN ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: PITTSBURGH 6
    HOUSTON 6 BOTTOM, 4TH
    DUE UP FOR HOUSTON: C LEE (.304, 0-FOR-2)

    Pirates 6, Astros 6  Bot 4, 0 OutsJul 23 3:53 PM


  • NL
    AT HOUSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY BRAD AUSMUS SCORED TY WIGGINTON.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, B AUSMUS ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: PITTSBURGH 6
    HOUSTON 5 BOTTOM, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR HOUSTON: C SAMPSON (.150, 0 HR, 0 RBI)

    Pirates 6, Astros 5  Bot 3, 0 OutsJul 23 3:34 PM


  • NL
    AT HOUSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY DOUG MIENTKIEWICZ SCORED ADAM LAROCHE.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, D MIENTKIEWICZ ON SECOND, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: PITTSBURGH 6
    HOUSTON 4 TOP, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR PITTSBURGH: I SNELL (.194, 1-FOR-1, RBI)

    Pirates 6, Astros 4  Top 3, 0 OutsJul 23 3:13 PM


  • NL
    AT HOUSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY KAZ MATSUI (2) TO RIGHT WITH 2 OUT IN THE
    2ND OFF IAN SNELL.
    CURRENT SCORE: PITTSBURGH 5, HOUSTON 4
    DUE UP FOR HOUSTON: M BOURN (.225, 1-FOR-1)

    Pirates 5, Astros 4  Bot 2, 0 OutsJul 23 2:59 PM


  • NL
    AT HOUSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY FREDDY SANCHEZ SCORED NATE MCLOUTH.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, F SANCHEZ ON SECOND, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: PITTSBURGH 5
    HOUSTON 3 TOP, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR PITTSBURGH: R DOUMIT (.323, 0-FOR-0, SF, RBI)

    Pirates 5, Astros 3  Top 2, 0 OutsJul 23 2:48 PM


  • NL
    AT HOUSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    FIELDER'S CHOICE BY HUNTER PENCE SCORED LANCE BERKMAN.
    SITUATION: 3 RUNS IN, H PENCE ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: PITTSBURGH 4
    HOUSTON 3 BOTTOM, 1ST
    DUE UP FOR HOUSTON: T WIGGINTON (.270, 8 HR, 23 RBI)

    Pirates 4, Astros 3  Bot 1, 0 OutsJul 23 2:39 PM


  • NL
    AT HOUSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY MARK LORETTA SCORED KAZ MATSUI AND MICHAEL BOURN.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, M LORETTA ON FIRST, L BERKMAN ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: PITTSBURGH 4
    HOUSTON 2 BOTTOM, 1ST
    DUE UP FOR HOUSTON: H PENCE (.265, 12 HR, 49 RBI)

    Pirates 4, Astros 2  Bot 1, 0 OutsJul 23 2:37 PM


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

    CURRENT PITCHERS: PIT - IAN SNELL
    HOU - BRIAN MOEHLER

    DUE UP FOR HOUSTON: K MATSUI (.279, 1 HR, 19 RBI)
    M BOURN (.222, 4 HR, 15 RBI)
    L BERKMAN (.338, 22 HR, 73 RBI)

    Pirates 4, Astros 0  Bot 1, 0 OutsJul 23 2:21 PM
  • 5
    roots
    aqualung1 Added 5 roots

    Pirates vs. AstrosApr 2 4:33 AM