Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Pre Game - Notes & Lineup

It's a southpaw showdown tonight as LHP Francisco Liriano (1-7, 6.24 ERA) goes against LHP Erik Bedard (4-7, 4.36 ERA). The Twin lefty has been pretty strong in his past four outings, while Bedard has split four decisions and been bombed early twice. Both guys feature nasty swing-and-miss stuff, but have control issues. The game begins at 7:05 and will be aired on Root Sports.

The lineup: Jose Tabata LF, Josh Harrison RF, Andrew McCutchen CF, Casey McGehee 1B, Neil Walker 2B, Pedro Alvarez 3B, Clint Barmes SS, Mike McKenry C, Erik Bedard P.

Alex Presley is out again against another lefty with Harrison in the OF, and McKenry dons the tools tonight.

  • Brad Lincoln will pitch Saturday against the Tigers, while Jeff Karstens is slated to go Sunday or Monday at Indy in what should be his last rehab start.
  • June regressions: Pirate pitching is fourteenth in the MLB for fewest runs allowed this month, but the team is fifth in most runs scored.
  • The Bucs have won 9-of-10 at home, and are 20-11 at PNC Park in 2012, the second best home record in MLB behind the Dodgers (24-12). 
  • Pittsburgh has gone 9-1 in games started by opposing LHPs at PNC Park this season, and the big reason is Andrew McCutchen, who has a MLB-leading .468 BA against southpaws.
  • How much diff does the DH make? The Pirates have won four straight games and are 10-of-13 against AL teams at PNC Park since the beginning of the 2011 season. They're 5-10 at AL yards in the same span.
  • Pedro Alvarez has gone 7-for-11 with two doubles, four home runs and nine RBI in his last three games.
  • Casey McGehee has a seven-game hitting streak.
  • Neil Walker has made just one error in his last 52 games, and none this month. He leads MLB second basemen with 1100 chances in the field and 149 DPs. Not too shabby for a converted catcher/3B.
  • The Pirates have stolen 15 bases in their last 10 games, and 20 during June, the top mark in MLB.
  • The MLB said Maz and Billy Virdon have to go as honorary coaches. Their presence violates some bench rule, even tho Twin manager Ron Gardenhire was fine with it. Oh well, slipped it by for a day, anyhow.
  • This day in history: In 1925, CF Max Carey became the first switch hitter to hit for the cycle when he led the Pirates to a 21-5 victory over the Brooklyn Robins at Forbes Field.

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