Friday, May 20, 2016

Friday: Gerrit Cole v Eddie Butler, Lineup, Notes

Tonight: The Rox come to town with the opening pitch scheduled for 7:05. It's free t-shirt Friday, with a black WS championships tee tonight. The game will be on Root Sports and 93.7 The Fan.

Pitchers: Gerrit Cole (4-3, 3.05) starts the set off against Eddie Butler (2-1, 4.74). Cole Train was dominant in his last outing against the Cubs, and that could jump start him after an up-and-down start to 2016. He has a win from the April Coors series, going six innings and giving up a pair of runs. Butler is a 2012 first rounder of the Rox making his first circuit around MLB, replacing the injured Jorge De La Rosa. This will be his fourth start. He's a fastball/slider tosser and likes to open with first-pitch strikes, so we'll see if that influences the usually patient Bucco lineup. Butler has allowed at least four runs in two of his three outings and still feeling his way around a big league mound. But he has won his last two games, so Eddie's coming in on a mini-roll. The youngster has faced the Pirates briefly, giving up one earned run on two hits in 2-1/3 innings of relief in the last series.

Gerrit Cole looks to build on his past couple of strong outings (photo Dave Arrigo/Pirates)

Lineup: John Jaso 1B, Cutch CF, Gregory Polanco RF, Starling Marte LF, Fran Cervelli C, David Freese 3B, Josh Harrison 2B, Jordy SS, Cole P. Freeser's in, but it's good news for the Bucs that JHK's playing time has increased to three games on, one off. His bat and glove have looked good as ever; now we just have to wait for that first hard slide, both as a runner and defender.

The Pirates swept the Rockies at Coors in late April, but the Rox have been playing decent ball (11-8) since. Their lineup is still tough, even away from home, with some good young pitching. After Atlanta  flexed its muscles this week, keeping Colorado in the park will be the challenge for the Bucco staff during the weekend.

  • The Pirates have won seven straight v the Rockies.
  • Jameson Taillon and Chad Kuhl are Top Ten in this week's Baseball America Hot Sheet.
  • Altoona is giving out the Andrew McCutchen Astronaut Bobblebody tonight.

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