Both the Pirates and Reds are gonna be busy in the next three weeks. The teams each have 20-game stretches without a break starting with tonight's contest. The game is scheduled to start at 7:05 and will be aired by Root Sports and The Fan 93.7.
Pirates lineup: Starling Marte LF, Neil Walker 2B, Andrew McCutchen CF, Garrett Jones 1B, Russell Martin C, Pedro Alvarez 3B, Travis Snider RF, Clint Barmes SS and AJ Burnett P.
Reds lineup: Shin-Soo Choo CF, Chris Heisey LF, Joey Votto 1B, Brandon Phillips 2B, Jay Bruce RF, Jack Hannahan 3B, Zack Cozart SS, Devin Mesoraco C and Mike Leake P.
- No word on Wandy's hammy; the Sunday start is "To Be Announced."
- Starling Marte has put up three consecutive two-hit games and has a five-game leadoff hit streak.
- Joel Sherman of the NY Post says the Yankees were split over retaining Russell Martin after the season; some felt that the money directed to Ichiro Suzuki should have been used to keep the catcher; others felt his offense was overblown.
- MLB Network is picking up several Bucco broadcasts from Root Sports this month that clashed with Penguin matches. The games are Sat., April 13th, Reds at Pirates; Wed., April 17th Cards at Pirates; Fri., April 19th Braves at Pirates; Sat., April 20th, Braves at Pirates and Mon., April 22nd, Pirates at Phillies. Coverage starts at 7PM.
- K's are up around the league, and not just because of the Bucs. Dave Cameron of Fangraphs looks at the trends, squints hard at the data, and proposes that the installation of PitchF/x cameras - the ones that provide that ball/strike box on your TV or electronic toy - has made the umpires better at calling strikes. At least they're calling more of them.