Saturday, June 16, 2012

Notes, News and Lineup

RHP AJ Burnett (6-2, 3.61) takes on RHP Ubaldo Jimenez (6-4, 4.91) this afternoon. Burnett hasn't lost a game since the drubbing in St. Louis on May 2nd, but it'll be a task today. He's 1-5 with a 6.75 ERA at The Jake/Progressive Field with a 1.795 WHIP. Jimenez has been strong in his last two starts. His Achille's Heel has been his control, but the undisciplined Bucs may not have the plate skills to take advantage, especially if he can toss early strikes. The game starts at 4:05 PM and will be aired by Root Sports.

The Lineup: Alex Presley LF, Neil Walker 2B, Andrew McCutchen CF, Garrett Jones DH, Casey McGehee 1B, Pedro Alvarez 3B, Jose Tabata RF, Rod Barajas C, Clint Barmes SS.

Yesterday's lineup, with Clint Barmes swapped for Josh Harrison at SS.

  • Pittsburgh is 15-16 against Cleveland since interleague play began in 1997, their most wins against any team in the AL. This is the fourth straight year the Bucs and Indians have faced each other; guess the two interstate foes have become an interleague rivalry series.
  • Dejan Kovacevic of the Tribune Review noted that "The Pirates' cleanup hitters are batting a combined .209 with five home runs and 26 RBIs." The Bucco four hole batters have yet to draw an intentional walk. Well, still 99 games to go.
  • In their first 63 games, the Pirates have played 37 that have been decided by one or two runs, with a 23-14 mark in them.
  • Pittsburgh Pirates 2011 Minor League Pitcher of the Year Kyle McPherson makes his 2012 debut with Altoona tonight. The hard throwing 6'3" righty has been out since spring camp with "dead arm" syndrome (officially listed as shoulder inflammation).
  • Matt Eddy of Baseball America wrote that Jameson Taillon and Gerrit Cole would be among his top ten choices if he were to form a 2015 MLB rotation of kids now in the minors.
  • 3B Jordan Steranka of Penn State and Mt. Lebanon HS expects to sign next week with the Pirates, according to Guy Cipriano of the Centre Daily Times. The All-Big Ten selection, drafted 21st, is recovering from mono and has yet to pass his physical.

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