-- Andrew McCutchen and Andy LaRoche will bat 1-2 for the Bucs tonight; the middle of the order will be Garrett Jones, Ryan Doumit, and Lastings Milledge. The table-setting duo have 115 RBI; the trio forming the heart of the lineup have 96.
Sound a little backwards to you?
-- Get over yesterday's hoo-hah. The storylines should be the Bucs took 3 out of 4 from LA, Andy LaRoche went Pops on his old team mates, and Zach Duke pitched great, not that JR had a brain cramp.
In spite of what Russell said, our best guess is that he planned to keep the Zachster in until he lost the shutout; there just happened to be two outs in the ninth before that happened. JR should have taken that into consideration, but he didn't, and oh well.
The pitching coach, Joe Kerrigan, agreed with the call, according to Dejan Kovacevic of the Post Gazette. Hopefully, it results in more giggles than poison in the locker room.
-- The guy the Bucs have been hot after, Miguel Angel Sano, is signing with the Twins for $3.15M, according to Baseball America. Word was that his agent, Rob Plummer, and the Pirates involved, Neal Huntington and Rene Gayo, got along like a mongoose and a couple of cobras.
The international bazaar is like the Wild West; maybe it's time for MLB to negotiate with the union for a universal draft. Besides all the dirty laundry, the kids that get drafted outside the first round are taking a financial drubbing compared to open market teens.
-- DK got the Boss Man, Bud Selig, on record as saying he keeps an eye on everyone's books, and he's 100% behind the way the Bucco suits are spreading the cash around.
-- They come, they go. Joe Kerrigan said he'd be back in 2010; Rich Donnelly won't be. The Pirates plan to replace Donnelly with a assistant pitching coach to serve as Kerrigan's heir apparent.
-- RHP Anthony Claggett, just picked up from the Evil Empire, passed his Bradenton test and was added to the active roster.
-- Yesterday's win was the first time in five weeks that Pittsburgh has taken back-to-back victories. It also eliminated the Pirates from the Bryce Harper sweepstakes. The No. 1 pick will again go to the Washington Nationals in next June's draft.
The Pirates and Baltimore are still battling for the #2 spot. Pittsburgh had 59 wins, the O's have 60.
-- For all the talk of building from the bottom up, Pittsburgh only got one player on the short-season New York-Penn League's Baseball America Top Twenty, State College RHP Victor Black.
He was the Bucs' 49th pick in the draft, a supplemental first rounder from Dallas Baptist. Black went 1-2 for the Spikes, with a 3.45 ERA and 33 K's in 31-1/3 innings.