Friday, March 31, 2017

Friday Nite: Bucs Head North To Face Bleu Jays, Taillon v Marcus Stroman, Lineup, Notes, Shugs Optioned

Tonight: The Pirates are under the lights to face Toronto in back-to-back games at Olympic Stadium (ok, Stade Olympique) in Montreal. The opening toss is at 7:07 and the match will be aired on 93.7 The Fan. This is the Bucs first return to La Belle Ville since a 2-1 loss to the Expos on July 11th, 2004 when Josh Fogg was bested by Scott Downs.

Lineup: Adam Frazier LF, Starling Marte CF, Cutch RF, John Jaso DH, David Freese 3B, Fran Cervelli C, Josh Bell 1B, Josh Harrison 2B & Jordy Mercer SS (Jameson Taillon P). Looks like a real lineup, minus Gregory who is still soaking up the Florida sun. It'll be interesting to see who fills the two-hole when he returns.

Looks like Clint is gonna keep running w/Fraze at leadoff (photo Dave Arrigo/Pirates)

Pitcher: Jameson Taillon with Daniel Hudson, Felipe Rivero, Juan Nicasio and Antonio Bastardo to follow.

  • AJ Shugel was optioned to Indy. These four remain alive for the final three pitching spots: Wade LeBlanc, Tyler Webb, Tyler Glasnow and Trevor Williams. Jared Hughes, btw, cleared waivers and is a free agent.
  • Ivan Nova isn't making the trip to Canada. He's staying behind in Florida to work a minor-league game at Pirate City Sunday to keep his five-day routine intact. Gregory Polanco is keeping him company with visa and shoulder woes, both hopefully minor.
Ivan is still in Florida; he's off until the Home Opener (photo Pittsburgh Pirates)
  • JHK is walking a very narrow line after his latest episode. “He doesn't have any other chances,” team president Frank Coonelly told the media yesterday. “Whatever number of chances he has had, he has exhausted all of them.”
  • Paul Swydan of Fangraphs listed the playoff chances as voted on by the site's staff; Pittsburgh did not fare very well. Fansided's Mark Whitener looked at the 2017 Bucs (caveat emptor: he posted b4 a couple of cuts) and basically agrees, placing them on the middle rung of the Central.
  • Ryan of the North Shore Nine has a schedule breakdown that shows monthly degree-of-difficulty over the season both by 2016 results and 2017 projections. Tough hump to climb early with a second half break.
  • Al Oliver is in town to catch the set; "Scoops" started with the Bucs and finished his career with the Expos.

No comments: