- Israel hits symbols of Hamas rule; scores killed
- Mississippi abortion law can’t be enforced
- Teacher who survived Sandy Hook has book deal
- Jury awards Jesse Ventura $1.8M in case vs. ‘American Sniper’ author Chris Kyle
- Government OKs Arab-owned company to operate U.S. cargo port
- Defense lawyer: McDonnell’s wife had ‘crush’ on CEO
- Chinese hackers stole ‘huge quantities’ of sensitive data on Israel’s Iron Dome
- House Republicans unveil bill to speed deportations of border children
- Californians protest middle school for hiring white man to teach cultural studies
- Killer’s sentencing overturned because mother couldn’t find seat in courtroom
Volquez outdueled as Pirates fall to Reds 4-1
Question of the Day
Three years later, Cueto is still at the top of his game.
At the moment, it looks as if Volquez might be back on the path to joining him.
While Cueto continued his mastery of the Pirates in Cincinnati’s workmanlike 4-1 victory on Tuesday night, Volquez spent six innings matching Cueto zero for zero before faltering in the seventh to send Pittsburgh to its ninth loss in its past 12 games.
Still, for a pitcher signed to a one-year, $5 million flier in the offseason, Volquez (1-1) is one of the bright spots in his team’s slow start. He gave up two runs and five hits in seven innings, walking one and striking out three while his ERA ticked up to 1.93.
Heady territory for a player who was one of the worst starters in baseball a year ago.
“He’s changing speeds, getting ahead early, throwing first-pitch strikes,” Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said. “Only three three-ball counts. He’s definitely giving us a chance to win a game and keep us in games.”
Just not enough to win them. Then again, the Pirates rarely do when they face Cueto, who tossed his second three-hit win over Pittsburgh in less than a week. He worked them over in a shutout victory last Thursday in Cincinnati and was just as dominant on a night when the Pirates only managed to get a handful of balls out of the infield.
Cueto (2-2) struck out four and walked three while running his career-long scoreless streak to 21 innings before giving up a home run to Andrew McCutchen with one out in the ninth. He improved to 15-4 in his career against the Pirates and became the first Cincinnati pitcher to toss consecutive complete games since Mat Latos did it in June 2012.
“He’s not really a guy, when he’s throwing strikes, you can wait out,” Hurdle said of Cueto. “He’s just been really, really tough. Not just on us, but we’ve seen him back-to-back times, probably in a very good place for him.”
“I was just making good pitches the first couple, six innings,” Volquez said. “I just made a couple of mistakes in the seventh. Two strikes, single, that’s a bad pitch. That’s the right pitch, but I can’t finish them up.”
At one point Cueto dropped the ball while standing on the mound then immediately gave up a home run to Russell Martin as the standing room-only crowd lustily chanted the pitcher’s last name. He lasted just 4 1-3 innings that night as the Pirates won their first postseason game in 21 years.
Six months later, the chants would be half-hearted at best.
- Boehner rules out impeachment: 'Scam started by Democrats'
- Obama thanks Muslims for 'building the very fabric of our nation'
- Obama's brother wears Hamas scarf bearing anti-Israel slogans in photo
- Obama: 'Not a new Cold War,' but new Russia sanctions announced
- Smugglers, rainstorm combine to poke holes in border fence
- Federal judge grants 90-day stay in D.C. gun case
- PHILLIPS: Once-in-a-century stupidity
- D.C. seeks to stay judge's order allowing gun owners to carry in public
- Illegal immigrants demand representation in White House meetings
- PRUDEN: When the hangman botches the job
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world