It's gonna be tough. The Brewers return home after a four game sweep of the Dodgers, and LA broomed Pittsburgh in early April. And we're painfully aware that the Pirates have gone 6-43 at Miller Park, including a 1-8 record there last season. But the Bucs have won five of their last six, so we'll cross our fingers and knock on wood that it will be a spirited series.
The lineup: Jose Tabata LF, Josh Harrison SS, Andrew McCutchen CF, Pedro Alvarez 3B, Neil Walker 2B, Matt Hague 1B, Rod Barajas C, Jordy Mercer SS, Kevin Correia P.
Per tonight's lineup, it looks a lot like Indy did have a couple of ballplayers, after all. And we notice Clint Barmes is still off; maybe that cage work isn't progressing quite as well as hoped.
- Juan Cruz will rejoin the club today after taking care of family business in the Dominican Republic. To make room, Charlie Morton has been placed on the 15 day DL with elbow inflammation. No word on who will replace him, but the Pirates are off on Monday and could just skip his turn. That would possibly set up a return from rehab by Jeff Karstens, or maybe a spot start by Brad Lincoln, though he hasn't thrown more than 18 pitches in an outing since May 14th. (Edit: Mike Sanserino of the Post Gazette tweeted that Bad Brad will start Tuesday, as Doug Slaten gives the club a full crew in the pen.)
- Ben Duronio of Fangraphs posts that Jason Grilli's impressive performance could be sustainable (well, maybe not the K rate) through the season.
- The Pirates finished May with a record of 15-13, their first winning record in the month since 2008, when they had the same mark. The Bucs have now won six-of-seven, and are 3 games behind the Reds while only 1/2 game away from the second place Cards.
- Bradenton Marauders RHPs Gerrit Cole (4-1/2.47) and Jameson Taillon (3-4/3.29) were named to the Florida State League mid-season All-Star team today.
- Baseball America calls West Virginia SS Alen Hansen "the biggest breakout prospect of the year so far."
- The Pirates renewed their working agreement with the Indianapolis Indians for two more years, through 2014.
- This day in history: In 1965, LHP Bob Veale set a Pittsburgh Pirates club record with 16 strikeouts when he beat the Phillies, 4-0, at Forbes Field. The five-hitter was the Bucs 12th consecutive win.
- Congratulations to all the local high school baseball champs: Seneca Valley (AAAA), Blackhawk (AAA), Ellwood City (AA), Neshannock (A), and Allderdice (City).
- And also congratulations to all the local high school softball champs: Canon-McMillan (AAAA), Montour (AAA), Deer Lakes (AA), Chartiers Houston (A) and Brashear (City).