Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Pirates - Dodgers

The Bucs open a nine day West Coast swing this afternoon against the rejuvenated LA Dodgers. Shedding the weight of the McCourt divorce, the Blue are off to a 3-1 start, taking the series from San Diego at Petco and knocking the ball around the yard to do it. LA scored 21 runs, led by Matt Kemp, who has a .389/2/8 line, and Andre Ethier at .267/1/8.

The Dodgers should provide a good test of just how strong the Pirtae arms are this year. Today's 4:10 PM game will match Cy Young winner LHP Clayton Kershaw against RHP Kevin Correia in the Dodgers' home opener. The following two games will see opening pitch tossed at 10:10. Wednesday will pit RHP Chad Billingsley against LHP Erik Bedard, and Thursday will see LHP Chris Capuano take on RHP Jeff Karstens.

Today's Pirate Lineup: Jose Tabata RF, Alex Presley LF, Andrew McCutchen CF, Casey McGehee 3B, Matt Hague 1B, Neil Walker 2B, Rod Barajas C, Clint Barmes SS, Kevin Correia P.

It's the same lineup 1-8 that Clint Hurdle used against Cliff Lee; we'll see if it works twice in a row.

  • In the past six years, the Bucs have posted a 6-17 record in Los Angeles. They haven't won a series in Dodger Stadium since 2006. 
  • When they take the field today, the Pirates will have faced the top three 2011 NL Cy Young finalists (Doc Halladay, Cliff Lee, Clayton Kershaw) in their first four games. The 2011 win-loss record of the foursome  the Pirates squared up against in the first four games (add Vance Worley) was 68-12. The four pitchers have also combined to win a total of four Cy Young Awards.
  • It's homecoming for Pirate C Rod Barajas. He joined the Dodgers in late August of 2010 and was their starting catcher in 2011. Barajas is from Ontario, CA, about 25 miles east of LA, and went to Sante Fe Springs High and Cerritos Community College.
  • Tim Williams of Pirates Prospects reports that Zack Von Rosenberg has been removed from the West Virginia roster, and will remain in extended spring training at Bradenton.

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