The pitching has been OK during the Pirates mini-burst of four in a row, but here's why they're winning: Pittsburgh is averaging 8.5 runs and batting .355 during the win streak. That'll notch ya a couple of W's.
> Yoslan Herrera did just the opposite of most Buc starters yesterday and it worked out just fine. "[I looked] at videos from the first two outings and saw [I] had to make adjustments," said Herrera. "[I] pitched more on the corners this time than before."
He had to nibble more! What a difference that is.
More importantly, he established his fastball early on and was in sync with C Ryan Doumit's game-calling all night. Herrera pitched off of his heater, even though it's only in the mid-80's. Of the 52 pitches he used in the first three innings, 34 were fastballs. He went more to his off-speed pitches as the game wore on.
> Nothing new on the trade talks. Now it's just a matter of playing chicken as the July 31st date approaches.
On the minor league front: RHP Mike Thompson (2-1, 5.03) came in cold and did yeoman's work for Indy last night, pitching 5 1/3 innings and allowing one earned run on six hits with a walk after starting RHP Jimmy Barthmaier (3-1, 3.71) exited in the first after stopping a line drive with his right (pitching) wrist. Marino Salas (3-3, 4.06) hurled a scoreless inning to get the win.
3B Neil Walker (.238) was 2 for 4 with two doubles, three RBI and two runs scored. 2B Luis Ordaz (.329) added three hits and a run scored, and LF Nyjer Morgan (.271) went 2 for 5 with a RBI and a steal.
> At Altoona, RHP Dan Reichert (1-1, 3.55) struck out a season high seven and allowed just five hits and one run in 7 1/3 innings to earn the win. The 32-year old was purchased from Cleveland's AAA team earlier this month, and has pitched in 124 MLB games, including 51 starts. He's 21-25 with 2 saves and a 5.55 ERA.
The Curve are a lot like the parent club in one respect: it's 23-5 when its starting pitcher goes at least six innings
LF Jason Delaney (.296) went 2-4 with a double and RBI, while 2B Jason Bowers (.269) of Laurel Highlands HS also went 2-4 with a RBI.
> Bradenton got waxed in the GCL - don't ask - but 2B Adenson Chourio (.319), who went hitless, picked up two walks, two stolen bases and a run scored. Even when he doesn't hit, he's a threat.
> Pirates minor league RHPs Roman Carrasco and Luis Figueroa were each suspended 50 games today after testing positive for anabolic steroids, according to Major League Baseball. Both suspensions were effective immediately.
Carrasco was 7-1 with a 2.82 ERA in 12 starts. Figuera was 6-2 with a 3.09 ERA. Both were pitching in the Venezuelan League.