The lineup: Alex Presley LF, Josh Harrison 3B, Neil Walker 2B, Andrew McCutchen CF, Garrett Jones RF, Lyle Overbay 1B, Brandon Wood SS, Mike McKenry C, James McDonald P.
Chase d'Arnaud is out with a stiff neck (he's expected back tomorrow), so third baseman Josh Harrison takes his place in the order and Brandon Wood moves to short.
The Reds are giving Scot Rolen another day off because of shoulder soreness, although the superior play of Miguel Cairo may have more to do with it, and Jay Bruce was given a rest day.
- Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports reports that Pittsburgh is sniffing around veteran middle man Jason Grilli. He had a nice season for Clint Hurdle in 2008 with the Rox and has been strong for the Phil's AAA Lehigh Valley squad after losing 2010 to knee surgery.
- The Pirate pitching has been getting a lot of love, but the key is still to score runs. When Pittsburgh plates 4 or more tallies, they're 40-7; under four, their record drops to 10-37.
- David Todd of FM NewsTalk 104.7 and Extra Innings posted the day's national coverage of the Bucs. Nice to see a spate of articles that aren't focused on "the streak."
- Keith Law was on ESPN's "Outside the Lines" this afternoon and said the Bucs shouldn't make any big deadline moves but continue on their rebuilding course. He doesn't see them as NL Central contenders this year, but thinks that they'll be the real deal by 2013-14.
- The Pirates have spent $11,900,400 in draft bonuses in 2010, $8,918,900 in 2009 and $9,780,500 in 2008, the league's highest three-year total at $30M+. The MLB averages for those years were $6.5M in 2010, and $6.3M in 2008-09. The club will get a big bill again in 2011 with Gerrit Cole and maybe Josh Bell yet to come. The results of their player evaluations aren't in yet, but at least their oft-questioned pocketbook is in the right place.
- The Bucs may be in first, but they continue to work hard in the community. Today they hosted a girls' softball clinic at Vincentian Academy, a youth clinic at PNC Park, and an academics through sports workshop at Peabody High. Some of the players involved today were McCutch, Jeff Karstens and Paul Maholm. All the coaches, the Parrot, and announcer Tim Neveritt are also taking part. Joel "The Hammer" Hanrahan has joined the fray. He's hawking foam hammers at joelthehammer.com, with proceeds going to Children's Hospital and the American Liver Foundation.