Should be interesting; the last time the pair hooked up was in late May, with Frankie besting The Shark 1-0 at PNC Park. The first pitch is scheduled for 4:05 and will be aired by the MLB Network, Roots Sports and 93.7 The Fan.
Pirate lineup: Starling Marte LF, Neil Walker 2B, Andrew McCutchen CF, Garrett Jones 1B, Pedro Alvarez 3B, Russell Martin C, Jose Tabata RF, Jordy Mercer SS and Francisco Liriano P.
JT is in the lineup v RHP; that says about you you need to know about the Travis Snider platoon. And the ol' skipper still hasn't broken up Jones & Alvarez (tho he did move The Kid to #2); guess he thinks Pedro's bat is too hot to drop down to the six hole, and he has a good point.
Cub lineup: Dave Sappelt CF, Starlin Castro SS, Dioner Navarro C, Alfonso Soriano LF, Cody Ransom 3B, Anthony Rizzo 1B, Scott Hairston RF, Darwin Barney 2B and Jeff Samardzija P.
Should be a good match up; the Cubs team BA is .242; the Bucs .243. The Cubs have scored 340 runs; the Pirates 331. Pittsburgh didn't get 13-1/2 games ahead of them because of their sticks.
- AJ will make his first start since tearing his calf on Sunday.
- The Pirates are on a six-game road winning streak and 23-17 overall away from the shores of the Allegheny. The Bucs haven't won seven straight road game since 2002.
- Fangraphs has the Pirates slated for 91 wins, which would put them second in the division and hosting a wild card game against the Reds.
- LHP Andy Oliver worked 6-2/3 shutout innings for Indy, giving up four hits and four walks with six K, tossing 105 pitches.
- The Angels have won 8-of-9 since being broomed by the Bucs, including 2-of-3 from the Cards.