Thursday, March 12, 2015

Phils Drop Pirates 3-2; Today's Lineup

Oh, the irony of it - Andrew Oliver and Jeanmar Gomez, both Bucco castoffs, earned the win and  save as the Phils overcame Jordy Mercer's jack against Cole Hamel to take a 3-2 victory in Clearwater yesterday. Jeff Locke took the L. After retiring the first six Phils he faced, Locke got into a second-and-third, no out jam in the sixth. He almost got away with surrendering just a run, but a two-out single by Jeff Francoeur brought home the winner.

Well, actually it ended up 4-2; the Phils batted in the bottom of the ninth up 3-2 so Brad Lincoln could get his work in, and Domonick Brown took him deep to add a little insult to injury.

The main takeaway is that Charlie Morton is still Ground Chuck, getting 7-of-9 outs via the grounder. He's also still working on a modified delivery, and that led to some first inning inconsistency. Hopefully the camp routine, with Ray Searage and Jim Benedict both on hand, will smooth out the bumps in Charlie's new mechanics.

Charlie Morton (photo Justin Alter/Getty Images)

Today's Game: The Bucs host the Red Sox at McKechnie Field at 1:05. The game will be webcast on and matches up AJ Burnett and Clay Buchholtz.

The Lineup: Sean Rodriguez 2B, Jordy Mercer SS, Cutch CF, Jung-Ho Kang 3B, Pedro 1B, Starling Marte LF, Andrew Lambo RF, Elias Diaz C, AJ Burnett P.
The Bench: The Pirates are carrying 18 subs. Cory Hart is slated to make his first appearance as a Buc at first base, stepping in for Pedro, and Jaff Decker will replace Marte in left field.
The Pitchers: Mark Melancon, Nick Kingham, Arquimedes Caminero, Bobby LaFromboise, Deolis Guerra.

Some good stuff - Kang is batting cleanup, Pedro is back from a minor elbow tweak, Lambo is in right field and Hart will get his first action at first base as a Pirate this afternoon. It's also worth keeping note of Clint's batting order. Marte is hitting sixth, we assume to keep the righty-lefty splits intact although he has been all over the order. Hurdle doesn't just want fielding flexibility, but the same ability to manipulate the lineup. We're curious to see how he fills in the top of the card when the games start to count.

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