|PNC Fireworks (photo by Sean Scarmack/You Tube)|
Lineup: Jordy Mercer SS, Josh Harrison 2B, Cutch CF, Gregory Polanco LF, David Freese 3B, Fran Cervelli C, Jose Osuna RF, Josh Bell 1B and Tyler Glasnow P. Not a very mighty order tonight. It is a red-letter day for Jose Osuna, tho - he's making his first MLB start.
Pitchers: Tyler Glasnow (0-1, 12.15) takes on CC Sabathia (2-0, 1.47). The 23-year-old righty was twice named the top pitching prospect in the International League by MLB Pipeline but as John Lennon noted "...it ain't easy." The FO figured there was no more progress to be made by Ty in the IL and if he was to move ahead, it would have to be at the MLB level. Throwing strikes is his biggest issue, and he took a step toward improving that facet last outing with seven whiffs v two walks. If he can learn to trust his stuff and mentally accept the ups-and-downs of his break-in period and assimilate its lessons, the experiment should end well. Tyler has never faced the Yankees and this is also his first interleague start. The 36-year-old CC is the next in a string of lefties crossing the Buccos path. After a three year bump in the road, Sabathia put up solid numbers last year and is off to a sweet start to this campaign. CC hasn't faced the Pirates since 2008, but he was murder on them back in the day, going 4-0/1.23 in six starts with two complete games and a WHIP of 0.795 against the Bucs.
|Tyler is trying to transition from prospect to MLB starter (image MLB Pipeline)|
- This is the fifth series between the Yankees and Pirates since interleague began; the Bronx Bombers are 9-3 against the Buccos.
- The Pirates have been involved in five straight sweep-or-be-swept series. The last team to kick off a season on that kind of roll was the 2003 Minnesota Twins. The Twinkies started that campaign with seven straight sweep series per the Elias Sports Bureau. The Twin Cities were 3-4 in those matches and after a split set ended that run, they went on to sweep two of the next three series.
|Freeser had more than baseball on his mind (photo Pittsburgh Pirates)|
- Bob Nightengale of USA Today has piece on David Freese's most brutal battle, the one against depression and anxiety.
- Kyle Glaser of Baseball America follows the prospects in the show with his "Three Up, Three Down" column which highlights fast lane guys and those stilling waiting to hit the freeway. Tyler Glasnow is one of the players mentioned; not hard to guess which lane Glaser has him in. However, Luis Escobar and Stephen Alemais did make BA's Prospect Hot Sheet.
- Probably not much of a surprise announcement here, but the Pirates have canceled their planned Starling Marte jersey giveaway scheduled for July 2nd. There will still be a free jersey promotion but the player is TBD.