All sorts of strange things can happen after long rain delays. Not the least of which is teams using players that don’t usually pitch in a blowout situation to save the bullpen.
Sometimes these things work out. Sometimes they don’t. Like when Jose Canseco pitched against the Red Sox in 1993, and ended up having Tommy John surgery on his elbow a month later.
On nights like tonight it can make a manager look like a genius. It can make a career position player have a great story to tell his grandkids. 40 years from now, Travis Snider will be doing just that when he tells them that he struck out 2010 National League MVP Joey Votto in a throwaway game in June of 2014.
There was a 75 minute rain delay in the bottom of the seventh inning. Pirate reliever Stormy Pimentel stayed in the game and pitched one more inning after the delay to run his tally to 4.1 innings on the night.
Pirate starter Edinson Volquez was shelled tonight, giving up eight run on six hits and three walks in just 2.1 innings pitched, putting the strain on the Pittsburgh bullpen.
So the Pirates brought in Travis Snider to pitch the ninth inning in a game in which they were trailing 9-3. Snider retired the side in the ninth, but not before he gave up two more runs, and walked pitcher J.J. Hoover.
Snider did manage to get the last laugh when he recorded the final out of the inning by striking out Votto with a 77 mile-per-hour “fastball”.
The Pirates added an empty-netter in the ninth to lose by the score of 11-4.
The other bright spot of the night for the Pirates was rookie Gregory Polanco recording a hit in his eighth straight game, which is a franchise record to start a career.