The lineup: Alex Presley LF, Josh Harrison SS, Andrew McCutchen CF, Garrett Jones RF, Neil Walker 2B, Gaby Sanchez 1B, Pedro Alvarez 3B, Mike McKenry C, Kyle McPherson P.
Clint Barmes gets a blow as Clint Hurdle sticks with J-Hay's hot stick; Presley is the lefty in the OF as Travis Snider tales a seat.
New York has been up and down. They just swept three home games from Miami over the weekend, but entered that series on a five-game losing streak.
Well, if the Bucs want to crack that .500 mark, they're running out of time; it has to begin with the four game set against the Mets. Afterward, they come home to face the Reds and Braves. Those two clubs may be resting some people for the playoffs when the Bucs face them, but Pittsburgh still has an uphill struggle, needing to take 7-of-10 to get to 82 wins.
- Jason Stark of ESPN posted in his blog that Pittsburgh can make the wrong kind of history: no team 16 games over .500 after 108 games has ever finished with a losing record.
- No, it's not Cutch's fault: McCutch has hit .304/.397/.488 since the All-Star break with 10 homers and 33 RBI. Overall this season, his line is .336/.406/.564 with 30 HR, 93 RBI, 103 RS, 19 SB and an OPS of +167 with a WAR of 6.8. He leads the NL in average, hits, runs, OBP and WAR. He did have what for him was a mundane August (.252/.347/.346), but after posting otherworldy numbers in June and July, he was bound to regress sometime.
- The last Pirate to win the batting title and hit at least 30 home runs was Dave Parker in 1978, who hit .334 with 30 bombs; Cutch is on track to become next.
- Ben Badler of Baseball America tweeted "Lost in recent criticism of Pirates' development program: They probably have four top 50 prospects, maybe five Top 100, plus Starling Marte." He added that there were "Some notable whiffs ID-ing talent in the US in general, but it's a very good system."
- Bucs pitchers have recorded 12 Ks in each of their last three games. games. It’s the first time Pittsburgh has done that in the modern era, beginning in 1900. The staff enters today with 1,114 strikeouts this season, just 10 shy of tying the club record of 1,124 set in 1969.
- The 25 greatest baseball movies of all time, as rated by H. Fooksman of Gunaxin, in case you're looking for something to pass the time between the end of the season and the hot stove league.