Monday, September 28, 2015

Jay v Lance Lynn; Lineup & Notes

Today's Game - JA Happ (10-8, 3.88; 6-2, 2.28 with the Pirates) starts the soiree off against Lance Lynn (12-10, 3.16). Jay's been a blessing to the staff since his deadline acquisition. His last start was a 6-3 win in Colorado Tuesday and he's won six of his last seven decisions. Happ has gone 1-0 in one start this year against the Redbirds, giving up three hits over seven scoreless innings while winning a 9-3 decision . But overall, he's not been so hot, having lost each of his previous six starts vs. St. Louis with an overall 2-8/6.00 slash.

Jay Happ opens the three game set against the Cards tonight (photo Gene Puskar/AP)
Lance looked bullpen-bound for the playoffs after three shaky starts in a row, but found his fastball command against the Reds last time out, tossing six goose eggs. Lynn stopped the Bucs in April 2-1, tho he didn't get the decision. He was treated rudely by the Pirates in his next two starts, losing 5-2 and 10-5. Overall, he's 5-5/5.00 v the Buccos in 18 career outings.

Pittsburgh pretty much needs a sweep to unseat the Cards in the division. And it's certainly within the realm of possibility: the Cardinals have not won a series at PNC Park since April, 2012. The game starts at 7:05 and will be on ESPN 2, Root Sports, and 93.7 The Fan.

Today's Lineup - Gregory Polanco RF, Josh Harrison 3B, Cutch CF, Starling Marte LF, Neil Walker 2B, Fran Cervelli C, Pedro 1B, Jordy SS, Jay Happ P.

First team, as expected, except A-Ram's been swapped out for Josh at the hot corner; Harrison is a liftime .368 hitter v Lynn with a 1.000 OPS, in a small sample of 19 AB.

  • The Bucs are 8-8 against the Cardinals this season, going 5-2 at home. Overall, the Pirates are 50-25 at home in 2015, the third straight season in which they've hit the 50-win mark at PNC Park.
  • Bobby LaFromboise has quietly turned into a pretty effective LOOGY. He's unscored upon in eight appearances (6-2/3 IP),  striking out eight and stranding all eight of his inherited runners.
  • The Pirates have six games left, all at home, and are about 140,000 fans shy of setting a new attendance record for PNC Park. 
  • For magic number fans: the Cards magic number to clinch first against the Pirates is four, while the Buccos magic number to guarantee home field against the Cubs in the wild card is three. 

No comments: