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A.J. Burnett nearly perfect in 5-0 win over Cardinals

Final: Pirates 5, Cardinals 0 (box)

WP: A.J. Burnett (1-2, 2.63 ERA)
LP: Shelby Miller (2-1, 1.96 ERA)

50x50_t470A.J. Burnett was perfect through 5 1/3 innings and carried a no-hitter into the seventh inning. His only two blemishes were a hit by pitch and a double to Carlos Beltran. He also struck out eight batters in his seven innings. His second strikeout was the 2,000th of his career.

50x50_t470The Pirates rushed out to a 1-0 lead in the first inning on an RBI single by Travis Snider that scored Starling Marte, who reached on a leadoff triple. Marte is now hitting .615/.643/.923 when leading off games this year. Unreal.

50x50_t470The Pirates added a run in the sixth on an RBI single by Neil Walker and added another in the seventh when Russell Martin scored on a throwing error by 3B David Freese on a Starling Marte ground ball. The Bucs would then add on some more insurance in the eight inning when Gaby Sanchez doubled in Andrew McCutchen. Sanchez would then score on a Pedro Alvarez single.

50x50_t470Overall, it was a very good game to watch. Burnett was unstoppable. The offense was stagnant through the middle innings, but came up with some timely hitting late in the game to close out the game. The bullpen pitched two perfect frames.

50x50_t470It’s really early to look at standings, but 14 games in, the Pirates are 7-7 and just one game back of the first place Cardinals.

50x50_t470The Pirates start a four game series tomorrow against the Braves. Jeff Locke will get the start against the organization that drafted him. After facing Miller tonight, the Pirates will face another highly regarded young arm in Julio Teheran.

 
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