What a night it was at Pittsburgh’s PNC Park.
The host Pirates were down 2-0 to the visiting Cardinals after the top of the third inning and 3-0 after the top of the fifth, but Bucs starter A.J. Burnett hit a solo shot in the bottom of the fifth and then Jung Ho Kang and Pedro Alvarez tied the game with back-to-back RBI singles in the bottom of the eighth.
The score would remain 3-3 until the 10th, when Cardinals first baseman Mark Reynolds slugged a go-ahead solo homer — his second homer of the game. But then Pirates catcher Chris Stewart answered with an RBI single in the bottom half.
Jhonny Peralta put St. Louis back on top once again in the top of the 14th on an RBI single that scored Matt Carpenter, but that just set up Andrew McCutchen to play the hero with this walkoff blast …
Pittsburgh has won two in a row and now stands just 3 1/2 games back of first place.
Your box scores and AP recaps from Saturday …
Blue Jays 6, Royals 2
Tigers 5, Twins 9
White Sox 5, Cubs 1
Diamondbacks 2, Mets 4
Braves 2, Rockies 3
Reds 3, Marlins 14
Astros 0, Rays 3
Athletics 5, Indians 4
Nationals 7, Orioles 4
Yankees 3, Red Sox 5
Cardinals 5, Pirates 6
Padres 6, Rangers 5
Phillies 5, Giants 8
Angels 0, Mariners 5
Brewers 7, Dodgers 1
The Pittsburgh Pirates have hired Ben Cherington as the team’s new general manager. They do so after the general manager meetings ended, but better late than never.
Cherington served as GM of the Boston Red Sox for four years, winning the World Series in 2013, but resigned during the 2015 season after Dave Dombrowski was named Boston’s new president of baseball operations. Which was a defacto demotionn for Cherington who, until then, had the final say in baseball decisions. Dombrowski, of course, was fired late in the season this year. Cherington went on to work for the Toronto Blue Jays as a vice president, but was seen as biding his time for another GM position. Now he has one.
Cherington takes over in Pittsburgh for executive vice president and general manager Neal Huntington, who was fired after a 12 years at the helm. Also fired was team president Frank Coonelly. Travis Williams replaced Coonelly recently. While the Pirates experienced a few years of contention under Huntington and Coonelly, they have slid out of contention in recent years as the club has traded away promising players for little return, all while cutting payroll. There’s a very big rebuilding job ahead of Cherington.
The first move he’ll have to make: hire a manager, as the team still hasn’t replaced Clint Hurdle since he was dismissed in the final weekend of the regular season.