Saturday, April 27, 2013

Bucs v Cards

A.J. Burnett (1-2, 2.79) goes against the Cardinals Jake Westbrook (1-1, 1.25) in an afternoon match that promises lots of pitching...but:

Burnett spun a one-hitter against the Redbirds earlier in the year and leads the NL in K with 42. The Pirates could really stand for him to go deep this afternoon to spare a bullpen that picked up eight innings last night and four frames the night before. Lurking is AJ's only prior appearance at Busch Stadium, when he allowed 12 earned runs on 12 hits in 2-2/3 innings last year.

Westbrook's peripherals don't match his ERA (his FIP is 4.33), and he's is 1-7/5.28 lifetime versus Pittsburgh. His only 2013 outing against them was rained out, but he had surrendered four runs on six hits during the two frames prior to the cloudburst at PNC Park.

The game starts at 4:15 and will be aired on Root Sports (It's a Bucs & pucks DH) and The Fan 93.7. That is, if the game is played - it's raining in the Gateway City, and the weathermen are predicting a delay or possible washout, although tomorrow should be cloudy but OK for baseball. They are rolling up the tarp now, so there may be hope...

Pirate lineup: Starling Marte LF, Travis Snider RF, Andrew McCutchen CF, Garrett Jones 1B, Brandon Inge 2B, Pedro Alvarez 3B, Russell Martin C, Clint Barmes SS and AJ Burnett P.

Inge at second and hitting fifth. Is it time to start a #FreeJordy hashmark yet?

Card lineup: Matt Carpenter 3B, Carlos Beltran RF, Matt Holliday LF, Allen Craig 1B, Yadier Molina C, Jon Jay CF, Pete Kozma SS, Daniel Descalso 2B and Jake Westbrook P.

Couple of ironman catchers today; both Martin and Molina are catching after a night game.

  • Neil Walker ended up with six stitches after his knuckle was gashed when he went hard into second last night. He'll have them in for 6-7 days and then will need some time to get ready to swing and throw. That probably means a week or ten days of Brandon Inge starting at second with John McDonald as the late inning leather replacement.
  • Jonathan Sanchez's beaning will be evaluated by the league office; he may be suspended for clocking Allen Craig last night.
  • Wild children: The Bucs give up the most walks in MLB at 4.03/nine and 90 overall. The starters are last in the NL at 4.14; the relievers 12th at 3.98.  They also lead the league in HBP with 14 and are third in the NL at tossing wild pitches with 12.
  • Good day for prospect watchers: both Gerrit Cole and Jameson Taillon take the bump.

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