Friday, May 18, 2012

Lineup, Notes, Gorkys Called Up, Cutch's Web Gem

RHP Charlie Morton (2-3, 4.05) goes against Motown's RHP Justin Verlander (4-1, 2.47). The Tigers have lost 17 of its last 26 games, and were just swept by the last-place Minnesota Twins. But Verlander is an interleague beast; he's 15-2 against the NL and won all three cross-league games in 2011. The game starts at 7:05 and be shown on Root Sports.

The lineup:Josh Harrison DH, Neil Walker 2B, Andrew McCutchen CF, Pedro Alvarez 3B, Garrett Jones RF, Casey McGehee 1B, Nate McLouth LF, Clint Barmes SS, Mike McKenry C.

OK - JT deservedly got a spot on the bench after having all sorts of problems last night (no hit, no field, no run, no effort), but geez, Nate McLouth? Not much choice, we guess. Barajas gets a seat again; it still feels to us that the more he hits, the less he plays. And if you need an indictment of the Pirate bench, try "Josh Harrison, DH." But again, not very many options for Clint Hurdle.

The Pirates sent Evan Meek back to Indy and called up CF Gorkys Hernandez. Hernandez was hitting .266 at Indy and is one of the better glove guys in the system. They probably could use a CF-capable type with the way JT has been playing the field and Alex Presley's demotion. We would have liked to see a bigger bat, like Jake Fox, Jeff Clement or Matt Hague get the call, but hey, that's us. Fox and Clement create 40-man roster problems, and as we saw in the last extra inning game, the Bucs have first basemen out the wazoo.

  • At least one Bucco is sad to leave DC. Andrew McCutchen has a career line of .447 with six doubles, two triples, ten home runs, 21 RBI and 24 runs in his 23 games against the Nats. Oh, and his juggling catch after banging off the wall tracking Adam LaRoche's blast was ESPN's Web Gem last night.
  • While a contract for Neil Walker has been a popular subject, locking up James McDonald, who's arb-eligible next year, is also trending. Tim Williams of Pirates Prospects takes a look at what it should take to sign him, and comes up with 5 years/$25-30M
  • Might be a little tough to get much offensive help in-house right now. Indy has gone scoreless for 33 straight innings, covering three full games and most of a fourth. Alex Presley went 0-for-4 with three whiffs in his first Indy start last night, so he may be there awhile, too.

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