The Pittsburgh Pirates came out on the wrong end of a pitchers duel Tuesday as the Detroit Tigers shut out the Bucs 2-0 at PNC Park.
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The evening started well for A.J. Burnett, who was warmly received by the Pirate faithful in his return to PNC Park. The 6-foot-4, 230-pound right-hander took care of business before encountering trouble at the top of the seventh.
After Nick Castellanos grounded out to third baseman Josh Harrison, both Alex Avila and Jose Iglesias claimed walks off Burnett to get on base. Rajai Davis singled on a ground ball to center that scored Avila.
The North Little Rock, Arkansas native gave way to right-hander Arquimedes Caminero to finish out the seventh. Burnett threw 69 of his 111 pitches for strikes, walked two, struck out eight, and surrendered seven hits.
Detroit added an insurance run in the top of the ninth when Rob Scahill, taking over for Caminero, gave up a single to Ian Kinsler with two out that scored Iglesias.
Tigers’ starter Shane Greene was impressive as he went eight strong innings in picking up his second victory of the season. The 6-foot-4, 210-pound right-hander threw 56 of his 81 pitches for strikes. The Clermont, Florida native allowed just three hits, struck out three and did not walk a batter.
Right-hander Joakim Soria closed the door on 10 pitches in the bottom of the ninth in collecting his third save this season.
Bucs skipper Clint Hurdle was sent to the locker room a little bit early as he was ejected by home-plate umpire David Rackley in the eighth. Hurdle was arguing about ball and strike calls from the dugout during Yoenis Cespedes’ at-bat against Caminero.
Up Next: The Pirates and the Tigers close out their three-game set on Wednesday evening. The first pitch is set for 7:05 p.m. Detroit (7-1) will go with right-hander Alfredo Simon (1-0, 5.06 ERA) to the mound while the Bucs will send Francisco Liriano (0-0, 2.57 ERA) to the hill..
The 31-year-old left-hander will be making his second start of the 2015 season tomorrow. His first start was a no-decision in the season opener against the Reds in Cincinnati last Monday. The 6-foot-2, 215-pound veteran went 0-0 with a 0.75 ERA in four spring training starts. The game will be broadcast by ROOT Sports Pittsburgh.
From The Clipboard: The time of the game was 2:50 and the attendance was 31,755…After Wednesday’s contest with the Tigers, the Bucs will have an off day Thursday before welcoming the Milwaukee Brewers to the North Shore for three games starting on Friday…Corey Hart collected his 1000th career hit Monday with his pinch-hit two-run homer in the seventh.