June 17, 1979: Pirates Complete Sweep of Dodgers With 5-1 Win

Ed Whitson allowed only two hits over seven and a third innings as the Pirates completed a three-game sweep of the Dodgers in Los Angeles.  Tim Foli drove in three runs to lead the offense.

The only baserunner against Whitson in the first three innings came on an error.  The Dodgers finally got to him when Bill Russell led off the fourth with a home run, putting the home team up, 1-0.

The Pirates came back, though, against former teammate Jerry Reuss.  In the top of the fifth, two players who aren’t often in the lineup gave the Pirates runners at second and third.  Manny Sanguillen, starting behind the plate with Steve Nicosia out for a short time, singled and went to second on a bunt by Whitson.  Matt Alexander, subbing in center when Omar Moreno was dinged up yesterday, singled Sangy to third and took second on the throw home.  Foli then doubled to put the Pirates up, 2-1.

Whitson allowed only two harmless baserunners in the fifth through the seventh, and the Bucs added to their lead in the top of the eighth.  Bill Robinson tripled to drive in Dave Parker, but the Pirates couldn’t get Robinson home even though there were no outs.

Whitson left in the eighth after a one-out walk.  He finished with just two hits and two walks allowed, and six strikeouts.  Chuck Tanner went with Kent Tekulve, who retired the next two hitters.  The Pirates then added more insurance in the top of the ninth against another former teammate, Terry Forster.  Forster walked Teke with one out, then gave up singles to Alexander and Foli to bring Teke in.  A groundout by Parker scored Alexander and made it 5-1.  Teke then closed the game out with a 1-2-3 bottom of the ninth.

The win left Whitson 2-3 and Teke with eight saves.  Alexander and Lee Lacy each had three hits out of the Pirates’ 14.  The Bucs next move on to San Francisco for three.