Pitchers: Jeff Locke (5-5, 5.92) opens the set against Madison Bumgarner (8-2, 1.91). Jeff has given up 18 runs in 8-2/3 IP in his past two starts, so it's hard to believe that he can't be better tonight. In his last 11 starts, Mad Bum has given up more than two runs once and is 7-0/1.27 over his past 10 starts. Locke needs his best David imitation against one of the NL Goliaths to give the Bucs a chance in this one.
|Jeff has a big challenge to meet tonight (photo Pittsburgh Pirates)|
Lineup: Jordy SS, Josh Harrison 2B, Cutch CF, David Freese 1B, Jung Ho Kang 3B, Starling Marte LF, Gregory Polanco RF, Erik Kratz C, Locke P. Looks like the team is going to try to carry Stew rather than DL him, probably a wise decision given the catcher situation tho it limits the bench.
Preview: The Giants are on an eight game winning streak and are 27-8 in their last 35 contests. The Bucs are on a five game losing streak with a 5-17 record in their last 22 matches. Not very good trend lines unless you're a fan of the Gunner's hidden vigorish (ie, the rubber ball theory - what goes up must come down and vice versa).
- The Pirates working on their fourth catcher is a tough spot, but nothing like 2011, when they went through Dewey, Chris Snyder, Jason Jamarillo, Dusty Brown, Eric Fryer, Matt Pagnazzi and Wyatt Toregas (who is now the Bucs manager at Morgantown). And no, Erik Kratz wasn't part of that crew; his prior stop in Pittsburgh was in 2010.
- Short-season OF Sandy Santos from the Domincan is making some noise per MiLb's Mack Burke.