Saturday, March 28, 2015

Final: Pirates 8, Blue Jays 3

The Pirates delivered an 8-3 victory on a record-setting day at McKechnie Field. In the 93-year history of the Bradenton park, the largest total spring attendance was set in 2013. On Saturday, that figure was shattered as 6,351 fans flocked to see Pittsburgh defeat Toronto. That means the old number of 93,433 fell by the wayside as a total of 99,450 have seen the 14 home games this spring.
Gregory Polanco's two-run home run and an unusual double play when he dropped a fly ball that was ruled a catch before fumbling the transfer, catapulted the Bucs past the Jays.
Pittsburgh minor league catcher Reese McGuire delivered a pinch-hit RBI double in the bottom of the sixth inning that jump-started a four-run frame to put the game out of reach for the visiting Blue Jays.
That inning was highlighted by Neil Walker's flyball to left field that looked like a routine out. However, Toronto's Steve Tolleson drifted back instead of forward. The wind, blowing in, brought ball well short and it safely landed in left field. That allowed the bases, which were full, to clear and net Walker a three-run double.
The Pirates head to Central Florida to face the Braves for a 1:05 p.m. tilt on Sunday. Stolmy Pimentel is scheduled to start opposite Atlanta's  Shelby Miller. Pittsburgh wraps its home slate Monday against Philadelphia.

- Jason Dill

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