BRADENTON, Fla. (KDKA/AP) – The Pirates’ relievers failed to provide Paul Maholm any relief in the teams 11-8 loss to the Baltimore Orioles on Thursday.
Leading 4-1 in the fifth inning, closer Joel Hanrahan took the ball from Maholm and subsequently gave up the lead allowing four runs on five hits, including three for extra bases and walking one.
Pirates manager Clint Hurdle then looked to his set-up man, Evan Meek, to shut down the Orioles. But Meek couldn’t do that either, allowing three runs on two hits to extend the O’s lead to 8-4.
After the game Hanrahan said, “I was embarrassed for a little bit there.
“You give up five hits in a row, it’s not looking too good,” he said. “I’m not overly concerned about it, but you’ve still got to get people out.”
The first six Orioles to face Hanrahan reached base to erase a three-run deficit. Ryan Adams’ two-run home run to right field gave Baltimore a 5-4 lead.
With runners on second and third, Hanrahan struck out the middle of Baltimore’s lineup: Mark Reynolds, Vladimir Guerrero and Jake Fox.
Hanrahan has been working on pitching more inside to the batters, but was unable to control his fastball against the O’s.
“You try to work on things, but there comes a point when you’ve got to let the competitor take over and get some people out,” Hanrahan said. “I didn’t do that until too late.”
It was the worst outing this spring for Hanrahan, over his first three outings he allowed one run on three hits.
Pirates starter Paul Maholm allowed one run on four hits and struck out one. It was the left-hander’s sharpest and longest outing so far this spring.
“I was aggressive and got some ground balls for double-plays,” Maholm said. “I threw two bad pitches. Both were supposed to bounce, but neither quite reached the dirt. That’s just part of getting in sync with your slider.”
The Orioles and Pirates combined for 27 hits, six errors and left a total of 14 player on base.
In other Pirates news, LHP Scott Olsen will throw 35 pitches Friday in live batting practice at the minor league camp. Olsen has been out since Feb. 17 with a strained left hamstring. RHP Joe Beimel will throw live batting practice Friday. Beimel has not yet pitched in a spring training game due to a strained forearm he suffered in February.