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Series Wrap-up, 4/9 - 4/11 @ ARI

Two awful innings doomed the Pirates in their first road series of the year. On Friday, a six-run third broke a scoreless tie and effectively took the Buccos out of the game en route to a 9-1 loss. Then, on Sunday, an unbelievable 13-run fourth inning for the Diamondbacks pushed Arizona to a 15-4 lead; the Pirates would only muster two runs the final five frames. That inning saw Arizona hit three home runs (including a two-run job by pitcher Edwin Jackson), a triple, a three-run double and three singles to go with four walks (yep, they hit for the cycle as a team in the span of two outs). Daniel McCutchen, Hayden Penn and Jack Taschner were all victimized.

The Pirates have now surrendered 45 runs in just six games - a high for either league. It's ugly, but pretty consistent with what we expected from the team entering the year. The simple truth is that the team lacks pitching depth. The top three rotation starters are all average and fairly consistent, but the last two spots - currently held by McCutchen and Charlie Morton (the losing pitcher Friday) - are frighteningly bad.

Aki Iwamura went 4-for-10 in the series, scoring three runs and drilling his first dinger in a Pirates uniform. Jeff Clement, Bobby Crosby and Andrew McCutchen also hit their first homers of the year. And Ryan Church (2-for-3 on Sunday) and Delwyn Young (2-for-6 on the series with two RBI) continue to hit well in the limited opportunities they receive. Not much else went well besides a very strong outing from Zach Duke on Saturday.

Overall, losing two of three on the road isn't the worst case scenario, and given that the Pirates were outscored in the series 27-13, it's actually kind of a gift. But it's the way they lost that's discouraging and a bad omen for the upcoming series at San Francisco.