Pitchers: Francisco Liriano (4-8, 5.33) closes the set against Daniel Mengden (1-3, 2.81). Frankie has lost five in a row and 7-of-8. No sense rehashing his woes; his very bad season has been a bone in the Bucco craw since mid-May. Mengden is making his fifth start after picking up his first MLB win in his last outing against the Giants. He hasn't given up more than three runs in any of those starts and his record is more a result of meager run support than rookie pitching. Mengden is an interesting cat; he has a unique high kick delivery, sports a handlebar mustache ala old-timey A's Rollie Fingers and Catfish Hunter and fans guys like he belongs with that group, with 26 K in 25-2/3 IP. He sports a low 90s heater with a variety of off speed stuff, the curve being his number two offering, and Rich Hill baffled the Bucs with that combo last night.
|Where oh where has my mojo gone...? (photo Gregory Bull/Associated Press)|
Lineup: JJ 1B, Gregory DH, JHK 3B, Starling CF, Matt Joyce LF, Josh 2B, Adam Frazier RF, Jordy SS, Erik Kratz C, Frankie P. We thought El Coffee looked a little gimpy last night; he's back to DH. Cutch gets a blow, and Stew is out again. We're guessing he's a little more banged up than the Bucs are letting on, as Erik is doing a day-after-10 inning night game gig. That shortens up the bench and limits Clint's options a bit, too.
- Better (for Pittsburgh) late than never - the Oakland Coliseum crew plugged the outfield wall gap that Josh Reddick, to his dismay, found last night.
- BTW, the Pirates pitching depth isn't limited to the trinity of Jameson Taillon, Tyler Glasnow and Chad Kuhl. Other comers: Steven Brault and Trevor Williams, back on Indy's hill, Nick Kingham returned to the mound on Friday with the GCL Pirates and Clay Holmes is heating up at Altoona. Mitch Keller, Yeudy Garcia, Luis Escobar and Stephen Tarpley are making noise in the lower levels. Keep your eyes on that gang; a couple are sure to break through.
- Some breaking news for baseball historians: Per the Oregonian, a stash of paperwork from 1857 may have finally cracked the mystery of who codfied baseball as we know it. The credit goes to New York Knickerbocker Doc Adams, who came up with the basics - nine players, nine innings, ninety feet baselines - during a sit down of the New York area baseball clubs.