Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Bucs v Phils; AJ On the Hill, Lineup & Notes

Today's Game: AJ Burnett (1-1, 1.66) takes on Sean O'Sullivan (0-1, 4.91). AJ finally got some runs in his last outing; it'd be nice to see that support continue against his ol' teammates. Burnett hasn't been strong against Philly. In 20 outings, he's 6-9/5.00, the highest ERA he has against any NL club.  He hasn't faced them since April of 2013, tho AJ should be plenty familiar with the yard.

AJ returns to the scene of the crime (photo via Forbes Magazine)

O'Sullivan has just been cleared from the 15-day DL with tendinitis of his left knee. He's worked a couple of short rehab stints since, and if the Bucs show a little patience, they should be in the Philly bullpen sooner rather than later. SOS has faced the Bucs once, tossing a scoreless relief frame. The game starts at 7:05 and will be on Root Sports and 93.7 The Fan.

Today's Lineup: Gregory Polanco RF, Neil Walker 2B, Cutch CF, Starling Marte LF, Pedro 1B, Jung-Ho Kang SS, Josh Harrison 3B, Fran Cervelli C, Burnett P.

Jordy's turn to take a seat in the Kang game of musical chairs; otherwise, same ol', as it should be. Jung-Ho looks a lot like Josh of 2014; it might behoove Josh to look like that himself.

  • AJ is out to tie a team record tonight. Since 1900, only three other Pittsburgh pitchers have given up two or fewer runs in each of their first six+ starts of a season: Howie Camnitz in 1909 and Earl Hamilton in 1918 (six games each), along with Bob Walk, who holds the franchise mark at seven straight games set in 1988.
  • Mark Melancon recorded his 57th save as a Pirate last night, which ranks eighth in club history. Next on the list is Stan Belinda with 61 career saves. The Shark had his eight-game scoreless streak snapped, though, while Jared Hughes ran his scoreless string up to five outings.
  • Gregory Polanco swiped his 10th base of the season last night, which ranks third in the NL behind Cincinnati’s Billy Hamilton (17) and Miami’s Dee Gordon (12).
  • The Phils aren't much at late rallies: they're 0-20 this season when trailing after eight innings.
  • The Bucs did a little shaking up of management positions at Bradenton, naming Rachel Madrigal as GM and moving other folk around.

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