The big fireball in the sky was the best offensive player for the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park on Wednesday. In the 5th inning, with the score tied 0-0, two straight fly balls were hit at Carlos Gonzalez. Both were routine catches, but neither ball was caught as CarGo duck-reached for them, obviously blinded by the light. If caught, the team would have been out of inning quickly, but what followed was an obviously rattled Jhoulys Chacin giving up five runs. He was replaced by Zach Putnam in the sixth, but the damage was already done.
After the game CarGo told reporters:
“You can’t catch something you can’t see…I didn’t see the ball at all. The sun was right in my face. It seemed like every time we were going to hit, the clouds covered the sun for the other team. Bad luck.
Tracy went on to say:
We’d have something a lot different to talk about if there were no sunglasses involved…You could tell that ball got right directly … He did everything he could beyond being so far in front of it, it hits him in the forehead or hits him in the face. He had a pair on.
There was some sympathy from the Pirates, as Presley was quoted as saying:
It’s just always in your face there…You gotta try to do something different, play it to the side or something. You can’t play it the traditional way.
It did seem like the clouds came out in the top of the sixth, just as the Rockies were up to bat. The team ended up splitting the “true” double-header with very little offense other a Ramon Hernandez home run.