By Mike DeFabo
Times West Virginian
I’m sure you saw the Pirates’ heartbreaking 16th-inning loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks on Sunday.
I don’t mean “saw” in the figurative sense that you read it in the newspaper or watched the highlights on ESPN or heard about it from a buddy. I mean I’m sure you were glued to your TV screen watching each and every pitch.
What’s that? You didn’t? You were cleaning your garage or organizing your junk drawer or visiting Grandma or doing whatever else you may do when you aren’t watching the Pirates?
No, I assure you, you saw Sunday’s game. If you have watched any of Pittsburgh’s first 122 games this year — any single game— I promise you the 123rd was just the same.
The starting pitching has been outstanding all season and it was again Sunday. Charlie Morton went seven innings, striking out seven and allowing just two runs. It was just another quality start for a Pirates pitcher in a season filled with them.
And it was another quality start wasted. The Pirates offense tallied just two runs. Russell Martin, who has continued to be a valuable offseason acquisition, doubled home Andrew McCutchen in the first. In the third, Starling Marte showed off the speed that has made him an electrifying player in his first full season in the big leagues when he legged out an infield hit and later scored.
But that was all the run support Morton got from a club that has produced the seventh fewest runs of any team in the majors this season. Though he pitched well enough for the “W,” Morton left after the seventh with a no-decision just like Francisco Liriano and Gerrit Cole and Jeff Locke and especially A.J. Burnett have many times this year.