Thursday, March 19, 2015

Bucs Hold Off Tigers Before Record Crowd, Cut-Down Day, Lineup & Notes

Home runs by Tony Sanchez, Starling Marte (3-for-3) and Willy Garcia helped the Bucs take an 8-7 win from the Tigers last night. The bats were hot as Pittsburgh pounded out 14 hits. AJ was strong for three frames before hitting his pitch count and being charged with a pair of runs in the fourth. Antonio Bastardo gave up a run (he's been scored on in 4-of-5 appearances) while notching a pair of K, and dark horse bullpen candidate Bobby LaFromboise was lit up for four runs and five hits (all ground ball singles) trying to put away the game in the ninth. Josh Hill came on to get the final two outs on a DP grounder after giving up his own worm-burner knock..

Starling Marte pointing toward a breakout seaon? (photo ESPN/AP)

Today's Game: Radhames Liz gets his first Grapefruit League start (he's made four relief appearances) as the Bucs travel to Sarasota to face the Orioles again. Game time is 1:05, and there is no TV or radio; log into

The Lineup: Jaff Decker CF, Steve Lombardozzi 2B, Corey Hart DH, Jordy Mercer SS, Sean Rosdriguez 1B, Elias Diaz C, Persdo Florimon 3B, Gorkys Hernandez LF.
The Bench: Andrew Lambo, Alen Hansen, Willy Garcia, Gift Ngoepe, Sebastian Valle, Wilkins Castillo, Deibinson Romero, Gustav Nunez, Mel Rojas Jr. and a handful of guys from the minor league camp.
The Pitchers: Nick Kingham, Jared Hughes, Arquimedes Caminero, Stolmy Pimentel, Collin Balester.

Still no Cutch. He is taking field drills, so he should be close. Sean Rodriguez gets a look at first today; we're surprised Lambo hasn't gotten much time at the spot.

Also today, the Bucs announced eight cuts: Casey Sadler, Jameson Taillon and Alen Hanson have been optioned to Indy, Willy Garcia to Altoona and Collin Balester, Jeremy Bleich, Gift Ngoepe and Mel Rojas Jr. were assigned to minor league camp.

  • Jose Tabata had to be carted off the field when he fouled a ball off the inside of his ankle. It was diagnosed as a contusion, not a break.
  • Chris Stewart was called "week-to-week" with his hammy sprain and is expected to miss another two weeks, which may prove glad tidings to the new and improved Tony Sanchez.
  • The game last night drew a record crowd to McKechnie Field of 9,018, the most people to catch a game in the franchise's 92 year history.
  • Jung-Ho Kang must be coming along OK in the field; the Bucs plan to introduce him to second base in the coming days.
  • Justin Sellers hopped a flight to California yesterday to be with his wife for the birth of their child. Sellers factoid: His dad, Jeff, pitched for the Red Sox in the mid-to-late eighties.
  • Congrats to Joe Jordano, Pitt skipper. He's in his 15th season with the Panthers and just collected his 500th coaching win.

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