Starting pitchers receive precious few opportunities to shine throughout the season. To see one taken away, as was the case for Joe Musgrove Tuesday night at PNC Park in the Pirates' 5-1 win against the Cubs, stings for the player, his coaches, his teammates and fans alike.
Musgrove tossed three spotless innings, giving up just one hit — a single to Jason Heyward — and striking out four. Perhaps more impressive, 25 of his 34 pitches went for strikes, a 74-percent strike rate. He was lighting it up — and then came the rain. And then came a two-hour, five-minute delay.
And there went his night.
"It's a bummer, man," Musgrove was saying at his locker following the team's victory. "We only get so many starts a year, so to have one taken away by the rain's tough, but that's kind of what you get when you play here. You look at the forecast and it's thundershowers for the whole week, so you kind of hope it doesn't fall on your night."
Only the rain did fall on Musgrove's night, and despite his attempts at staying loose and staying focused, it wasn't meant to be. Mother Nature had her way, and Musgrove had to pack it in until his number's called again.
“That was a hard one to swallow right there,” Clint Hurdle added in his press conference. “ ... It just got to the point where you can’t send him back out. He’ll be coming back on [his] regular turn … I’m sure he’ll have a little hop in his step Sunday when he gets out there.”
Which leads me to my first thought from Tuesday's tilt...