Saturday, April 11, 2015

Locke Down: Bucs Off the Schneid With 6-2 Win Over Brew Crew; Cutch, Frankie News

Behind another solid start and homers by Pedro and Starling Marte, the Pirates finally got in the W column last night with a 6-2 win over the Brew Crew. Jeff Locke went six IP, Neil Walker broke out with three hits, including a pair of doubles while El Toro and Fran Cervelli added two knocks each. The only downer was the top of the order, where El Coffee and Josh combined to go 7-for-8 in whiffs as the Bucs continued their swing-and miss ways with 12 strikeouts.

Jeff Locke 2012 Topps series
It's not all good news. Cutch took himself out in the ninth after running out a ball with what the club calls "left knee discomfort," so that will bear watching. He likely tweaked it in the seventh, crashing awkwardly after trying for a leaping catch near the wall.

Vance Worley takes the hill tonight as the Bucs try to get on a roll.

  • Casey Sadler will start Sunday; Francisco Liriano went home to be with wife Johanna as she added a baby girl, Natalie, to the family. Congrats, Frankie! Liriano will start again on Wednesday.
  • After a nightmare series against Billy Hamilton, Fran Cervelli nailed the only Brewer to challenge him, Scooter Gennett, on the back end of an attempted double steal.
  • Ryan Braun, who had a rib cage injury, started last night.
  • The Pirates had to land in Chicago due to thunderstorms last night and bus it in to Milwaukee overnight. We're not sure if the weather or the Reds have taken a bigger bite out of them so far...
  • The Reds remained the masters of the close win, whipping the Cards 5-4 with an eighth inning run. Billy Hamilton is now 7-for-7 in steals as he added another sack to his total.


WilliamJPellas said...

Ron, I was at the final game of the Pirates' opening series in Cincinnati, and while I thought Joey Votto was still limping just slightly, he is clearly much healthier than he has been since he tore up his knee two years ago. If Votto is even close to being in one piece, to my mind he is still probably the best hitter in the entire National League. Could be a game-changer in the NL Central, though I still don't like Cincinnati's pitching very much other than Cueto and Chapman. Their bench is definitely subpar, too. But: if they stay healthy, their front line players are very good and they could be tougher than I expected this year.

Ron Ieraci said...

Depth is their issue for sure, Will. But their everyday eight are pretty solid with, as you noted, a fairly pedestrian rotation. But with an ace and a lights-out closer, they could cause some headaches in the Central if they remain healthy.