The Times West Virginian

Pirates

September 28, 2012

Bucs lose, waste Snider’s gem

NEW YORK — Travis Snider went back to the right-field wall, dug his spikes into the chain-link fence, and hooked his left arm on top of the 8-foot wall.

Then the 6-foot outfielder hoisted himself up and grabbed Mike Baxter’s drive in the webbing of the glove on his right hand, maybe a good 4 feet or more above the wall, preserving a one-run lead.

Just call him Snider-Man.

“I was blessed to grow up in Seattle, and I watched Ken Griffey Jr. do that on a regular basis,” Snider said. “I remember being a kid and dreaming of doing that. Any time we got on the field in the Kingdome, that’s all we wanted to do, climb the wall.”

Snider’s web gem was clearly among the best defensive plays in the majors this season. Yet it wasn’t enough for the Pittsburgh Pirates, who lost to the New York Mets 6-5 Thursday as R.A. Dickey won his 20th game.

Pittsburgh, which led the NL Central at the All-Star break, lost for the 20th time in 26 games and dropped to 76-80. The Pirates must win five of their last six games — against Cincinnati and Atlanta — to avoid their 20th consecutive losing season. Pittsburgh’s streak of futility already is a record for North American major professional leagues.

Making it worse, NL batting leader Andrew McCutchen left the game in the seventh inning after bruising his left knee in a failed attempt to make a diving catch on a soft fly into short center by Daniel Murphy. He’ll be re-evaluated Friday.

“It’s all right. It’s not broken or anything,” McCutchen said. “It’ll be fine. I’m ready to go.”

McCutchen was 0 for 4 with two strikeouts, dropping his average to .332 and falling one point behind San Francisco’s Buster Posey (.333) for the NL batting title.

If not for Dickey’s win, Snider’s grab would have been the big topic. When the second-inning drive off Kevin Correia (11-11) left the bat, it appeared the score would be tied at 2.

“Incredible. Absolutely incredible,” Baxter said. “I don’t know how he did it. It was one of the best I’ve even seen. I thought it was gone, for sure. I didn’t even think twice.”

Then he stood on the top step of the dugout and watched the replay on the video board.

“Oh my God. The guy just kept elevating,” Baxter said.

Pittsburgh was astounded, too.

“It’s as good a play as you’ll ever want to see an outfielder make,” manager Clint Hurdle said.

For the 24-year-old Snider, the snare rekindled memories.

“It kind of brought me back to my childhood a little bit,” he said, “lots of hours with my old man hitting fly balls in the front yard. It kind of brings you back to being a kid.”

Pittsburgh had taken a 2-0 lead in the second when Rod Barajas hit an opposite-field RBI double that hopped the right-field wall, and Jordy Mercer following with a run-scoring infield single.

Ike Davis led off the bottom half with his 31st homer, but Barajas boosted the lead to 3-1 when he homered on an 0-2 pitch in the fourth, a drive over the old 16-foot wall in left.

Kevin Correia (11-11) gave up Scott Hairston’s RBI single in the fourth and Daniel Murphy’s tying single in the fifth before David Wright hit an opposite-field drive to right for his 21st home run this season and a 6-3 lead.

Dickey allowed three runs and eight hits in 7 2-3 innings, walking two and tying his career high of 13 strikeouts.

Jon Rauch, pitching on his 34th birthday, followed Dickey and allowed Alex Presley’s two-run homer in the ninth. Bobby Parnell retired speedy Josh Harrison on a groundout to shortstop Ruben Tejada in the hole, and Jose Tabata on a flyout for his fifth save

Snider was not planning to watch more replays of his catch later Thursday night.

“I actually have a big Washington Huskies game with Stanford,” he said.

1
Text Only
Pirates
  • Pirates jump on Haren early, top Dodgers, 6-1

    Josh Harrison had two hits with two RBIs and the Pittsburgh Pirates jumped on Dan Haren early in a 6-1 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers on Wednesday night.
    Harrison’s two-run double down the left field line capped a four-run outburst in the first against Haren (8-8).

    July 24, 2014

  • Pirates jump on Haren early, top Dodgers, 6-1

    osh Harrison had two hits with two RBIs and the Pittsburgh Pirates jumped on Dan Haren early in a 6-1 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers on Wednesday night.

    July 23, 2014

  • Pirates beat Rockies 5-3 for 3-game sweep

    Andrew McCutchen hit a tiebreaking single in the seventh inning, Neil Walker followed with a home run and the Pittsbugh Pirates overcame a three-run deficit to beat the Colorado Rockies 5-3 Sunday for a three-game sweep.

    July 20, 2014

  • Pirates rally by Rockies in 11

    Jordy Mercer doubled home Neil Walker with one out in the bottom of the 11th inning to lift the Pittsburgh Pirates to a 3-2 victory over the Colorado Rockies on Saturday night.
    Walker led off the inning with a single against Colorado’s Chad Bettis (0-2), moved to second on a sacrifice bunt, and scored one batter later when Mercer hit a drive deep into the gap in left-center.

    July 20, 2014

  • Pirates rally late, top Rockies, 4-2

    Travis Snider’s pinch-hit double in the eighth scored Neil Walker to spark the Pittsburgh Pirates to a 4-2 victory over the Colorado Rockies on Friday night.
    Walker trotted home when Colorado right fielder Carlos Gonzalez couldn’t track down Snider’s sinking line drive off reliever Matt Belisle (2-5). All-Star Josh Harrison added a sacrifice fly one batter later.

    July 19, 2014

  • Resilient Pirates looking for post All-Star surge

    The Pittsburgh Pirates find themselves in an average, every day — if still heated — pennant race.

    July 18, 2014

  • Jeter, Trout lead AL over NL 5-3 in All-Star game

    Derek Jeter soaked in the adulation from fans and players during one more night on baseball’s national stage, set the tone for the American League with a pregame speech and then delivered two final All-Star hits.
    Mike Trout, perhaps the top candidate to succeed the 40-year-old Yankees captain as the face of the game, seemed ready to assume the role with a tiebreaking triple and later a go-ahead double that earned him MVP honors.

    July 16, 2014

  • NL Central race should be fun

    If you’re a baseball fan, you’re going to want to watch the race for the National League Central division in the second half of the season.

    July 14, 2014

  • Liriano rusty in Pirates’ 6-3 loss

    Francisco Liriano was in trouble often, but it was just one bad pitch that really cost the Pittsburgh left-hander.

    July 13, 2014

  • Pirates drop final game before All-Star break

    Kris Negron hit his first career home run, and All-Star Todd Frazier added a two-run shot as the Cincinnati Reds rolled into the break with a 6-3 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Sunday.

    July 13, 2014

Featured Ads
NDN Sports
House Ads