Game 12 Lineup, Roster Moves

Here’s your twelve word season recap: The Pirates had a bad week, then had a pretty good week. Today they go for the sweep against the Reds and try to even up their record at 6-6. Today’s lineup can be found on the sidebar to the right.

Recent moves:
Chris Leroux was Designated for Assignment and Bryan Morris called up from AAA.

Phil Irwin was called up today to take a turn for Wandy Rodriguez and his gimpy hamstring. Josh Harrison was optioned to AAA to make room. If I’m reading the tea leaves correctly, this move portends the activation of Brandon Inge from the DL when Irwin is sent back down.

The Pirates Will Do Very Little This Offseason And That’s Okay.

What will happen this off-season:

In the OF: Nothing. Andrew McCutchen is rightfully entrenched in center. Starling Marte is ready for a fulltime job. Travis Snider gets first crack at right field. Alex Presley and Jose Tabata provide depth.

In the IF: Nothing. Pedro Alvarez, Clint Barmes and Neil Walker are set at third, short and second. Garrett Jones and Gaby Sanchez will platoon at first.

Behind the plate: A partner for Michael McKenry will be picked up. It won’t be Russell Martin if his price is really 4 yrs/$40M. I don’t know how much A.J. Pierzynski is looking for. Toronto (J.P. Arencibia/Travis d’Arnaud/John Buck) and Boston (Ryan Lavarnway/Jarrod Saltalamacchia/David Ross) both have catching depth to spare. Trading with one of those teams seems like the best option.

On the mound: A.J. Burnett/Wandy Rodriguez/James McDonald will head the rotation. After that things are in flux. Jeff Karstens will be in the mix if he’s tendered a contract. Look for the team to add one starter making $8-10M/year. Kyle McPherson and Jeff Locke will fill the back-end or provide depth.

In the Bullpen: This is where the most change will happen. Joel Hanrahan, Tony Watson and Jared Hughes will be there. Every other spot is up for grabs. This is OK because reliever performance can vary wildly from year to year. Bullpens are also one of the easiest pieces of the team to build on the cheap. For those same reasons, it’s also possible that Hanrahan could be traded if another team is willing to give up a solid catcher or starting pitcher.

So that’s it. The Pirates will sign or otherwise acquire a catcher, a starting pitcher and a slew of relievers.

What else was to be expected? The major moves were made in July – Wandy Rodriguez and Travis Snider.

There aren’t any obvious bargains to be had on the free agent market. Look closely at that list and you’ll find that each player falls into one of three categories: old, bad or prohibitively expensive. Any significant improvement will have to come via the trade route. If they could swing a trade for Giancarlo Stanton or Wil Myers or a shortstop with half a bat to go with this glove it would be beyond great, but I just can’t see a deal like that happening. This is your 2013 Pirates team. And it looks a whole lot like the 2012 team.

Series Preview: The Reds

Current record: 72-67, 3rd place in NL Central, 11.0 games back
2.5 games back of a Wild Card spot

Up Next: Cincinnati Reds, 84-57, 1st place in NL Central, 8.5 games ahead

Season Series: 6-6 (1-2, 2-1, 2-1, 1-2)

Notes: The last time the Bucs and Reds squared off, this series looked like it would be way more important than it is now. Cincinnati is cruising to the NL Central crown while Pittsburgh has gone from 15 games over .500 to merely five. A couple wins at Great American would be huge for the confidence of this team and its fans.

Familiar Faces: Bronson Arroyo, Xavier Paul, Ryan Ludwick

Probable Pitchers
Monday: LH Wandy Rodriguez (10-13, 177.0 IP, 117 K, 3.71 ERA, 1.28 WHIP)
vs. RH Mat Latos (12-4, 175.2 IP, 158 K, 3.69 ERA, 1.19 WHIP)

Tuesday: RH Kevin Correia (10-8, 141.0 IP, 65 K, 4.28 ERA, 1.32 WHIP)
vs. RH Mike Leake (7-9, 160.0 IP, 109 K, 4.73 ERA, 1.36 WHIP)

Wednesday: RH A.J. Burnett (15-6, 168.2 IP, 149 K, 3.68 ERA, 1.26 WHIP)
vs. RH Homer Bailey (10-9, 174.0 IP, 138 K, 4.03 ERA, 1.33 WHIP)

No lineup yet.

Astros Wrap Up

Scores:
Monday: 5-1 Loss vs. Houston. Listless Bucs lose lacklusterly. Box score.
Tuesday: 6-2 Win vs. Houston. Holt, Cutch, Wandy snap losing streak. Box score.
Wednesday: 6-3 Win vs. Houston. Pirates cruise to easy win. Box score.

Season Record: 72-64, 3rd place in NL Central, 10.0 games back; 1.5 games back of a Wild Card spot

Notes: Two nice wins take the series after a let down on Labor Day. 72 wins matches the Bucs’ total from last season. 10 more in their last 26 games will clinch a winning season. It will probably take at least 16 more wins to get them into the playoffs. As far as I can remember, this is the first series in a few months that the Pirates did not hit a home run. Brock Holt and Andrew McCutchen each had four hit games on Tuesday. Wandy Rodriguez was brilliant in seven shutout innings. Kevin Correia continues to defy all analysis and evidence by being an effective starter, becoming the Pirates’ third 10 game winner this year.

Combined Box

Pittsburgh AB R H RBI BB SO LOB AVG OBP
Alvarez, 3B 12 1 1 0 0 3 11 0.083 0.083
Holt, Br, 2B 11 2 5 2 0 2 2 0.455 0.455
McCutchen, A, CF 11 2 4 3 1 1 4 0.364 0.417
Jones, G, RF, 1B 10 1 5 2 2 1 2 0.500 0.583
Barmes, SS 9 1 3 2 2 3 1 0.333 0.455
Sanchez, G, 1B 8 0 3 1 0 2 4 0.375 0.375
Presley, LF 8 3 2 1 1 1 2 0.250 0.333
Barajas, C 6 1 1 0 0 1 7 0.167 0.167
McKenry, C 5 0 0 0 0 3 2 0.000 0.000
Snider, LF, RF 4 1 0 0 1 1 1 0.000 0.200
Rodriguez, W, P 3 0 0 0 0 2 1 0.000 0.000
Tabata, RF 2 1 0 0 1 1 3 0.000 0.333
Clement, PH 2 0 0 0 1 0 2 0.000 0.333
Harrison, PH-2B 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.000 0.000
Correia, P 1 0 0 0 0 1 1 0.000 0.000
Fryer, PH 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 0.000 0.000
Locke, P 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 0.000 0.000
  Totals 95 13 24 11 9 24 43 0.253 0.317

Batting
Doubles (3): Jones (25), McCutchen (26), Holt (1)
Triples (2): Alvarez (1), Presley (5)

Fielding
DP: (Sanchez-Barajas-Sanchez), (Hughes-Barmes-Sanchez)

Pitching

Pittsburgh IP H R ER BB SO HR ERA WHIP
Rodriguez, W (W, 10-13) 7.0 4 0 0 1 7 0 0.00 0.71
Correia (W, 10-8) 6.0 4 1 1 1 1 0 1.50 0.83
Locke (L, 0-1) 5.0 7 5 5 1 6 1 9.00 1.60
Hughes, J 3.0 2 0 0 0 5 0 0.00 0.67
McPherson, K 2.0 2 0 0 0 2 0 0.00 1.00
Hanrahan 1.0 0 0 0 1 1 0 0.00 1.00
Takahashi 1.0 1 0 0 0 3 0 0.00 1.00
Grilli 1.0 2 2 2 0 2 1 18.00 2.00
Resop 0.7 2 2 2 0 0 0 27.00 3.00
Watson 0.3 1 0 0 0 0 0 0.00 3.00
  Totals 27.0 25 10 10 4 27 2 3.33 1.07

Transactions: None

Cardinals Wrap Up

Scores:
Friday: 4-3 Loss vs St. Louis. Bucs drop a close one. Box score.
Saturday: 9-0 Win vs St. Louis. Big break outs for Pedro, JMac. Box score.
Sunday: 5-0 Win vs St. Louis. Pedro 3 run bomb. Box score.

Season Record: 70-60, 3rd place in NL Central, 9.0 games back

Notes: It didn’t start out great, but this may have been the Pirates’ best combined hitting and pitching in a series all season. Check the totals in the box score below and try to find me better ones in any previous post. Pedro Alvarez could have beat the Cardinals by himself with 3 homers, 2 doubles and 3 singles to knock in 7 and score 5. Andrew McCutchen started putting good wood on the ball again with 5 hits. The first-half James McDonald make a welcome return, posting 7 shutout innings and striking out 6 with only 1 walk. Wandy Rodriguez won his first game as a starter for the Bucs with 6 shutout innings of his own. The bullpen was stellar too with 8 1/3 scoreless innings of their own. Neil Walker missed the entire series with tightness in his lower back. Pittsburgh wins the season series against the Cardinals 8-7.

Combined Box

Pittsburgh AB R H RBI BB SO LOB AVG OBP
Alvarez, 3B 13 5 8 7 0 3 1 0.615 0.615
McCutchen, A, CF 13 2 5 1 0 1 8 0.385 0.385
Snider, RF 11 3 4 0 2 2 5 0.364 0.462
Barmes, SS 11 0 4 3 0 3 2 0.364 0.364
Jones, G, 1B 11 2 2 2 1 3 5 0.182 0.231
Harrison, 2B 10 1 4 2 0 0 2 0.400 0.417
Tabata, LF 10 2 2 0 3 2 6 0.200 0.385
Barajas, C 8 0 1 0 0 0 5 0.125 0.125
McKenry, C 6 1 2 1 0 2 2 0.333 0.333
Clement, PH 3 1 0 0 0 0 2 0.000 0.000
Burnett, AJ, P 2 0 0 0 0 1 1 0.000 0.000
Rodriguez, W, P 2 0 0 0 0 0 1 0.000 0.000
Sanchez, G, PH 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.000 0.000
McDonald, J, P 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 —- 1.000
  Totals 101 17 32 16 7 17 40 0.317 0.360

Batting
Doubles (6): Barmes (15), McCutchen (24), Alvarez 2 (21), Snider (7), Jones (24)
Triples (1): Snider (1)
Home Runs (3): Alvarez 3 (26)

Baserunning
SB: Snider (2)
CS: McCutchen (11)

Fielding
Errors: Alvarez (21), Barmes (14)
DP: (Barmes-Harrison-Jones), (Alvarez-Harrison-Jones)

Pitching

Pittsburgh IP H R ER BB SO HR ERA WHIP
McDonald, J (W, 12-6) 7.0 2 0 0 1 6 0 0.00 0.43
Rodriguez, W (W, 9-13) 6.0 3 0 0 3 3 0 0.00 1.00
Burnett, AJ (L, 15-5) 5.7 7 4 3 1 3 1 4.76 1.41
Grilli 2.0 1 0 0 0 3 0 0.00 0.50
Watson 2.0 1 0 0 0 2 0 0.00 0.50
Hughes, J 1.3 2 0 0 0 2 0 0.00 1.50
Takahashi 1.0 0 0 0 0 2 0 0.00 0.00
Hanrahan 1.0 1 0 0 0 1 0 0.00 1.00
Resop 1.0 3 0 0 0 1 0 0.00 3.00
  Totals 27.0 20 4 3 5 23 1 1.00 0.93

Transactions: Released LHP Erik Bedard. Recalled SS Chase d’Arnaud.

Series Preview: The Cardinals

Current record: 68-59, 3rd place in NL Central, 8.0 games back

Up Next: St. Louis Cardinals, 70-57, 2nd place in NL Central, 6.0 games back

Season Series: 6-6 (1-2, 1-2, 2-1, 2-1)

Notes: This is the Pirates final series against the Cardinals. Pittsburgh needs to win some games, but taking them against St. Louis would be extra helpful. To make that happen, they’ll have to hit and pitch better than they have for the bulk of August.

Familiar Faces: None

Probable Pitchers
Monday: RH Kyle Lohse (13-2, 169.0 IP, 104 K, 2.61 ERA, 1.08 WHIP)
vs. RH A.J. Burnett (15-4, 151.1 IP, 133 K, 3.63 ERA, 1.25 WHIP)

Tuesday: RH Jake Westbrook (13-9, 159.1 IP, 96 K, 3.67 ERA, 1.30 WHIP)
vs. RH James McDonald (11-6, 152.0 IP, 135 K, 3.73 ERA, 1.22 WHIP)

Wednesday: RH Joe Kelly (4-5, 77.1 IP, 55 K, 3.26 ERA, 1.42 WHIP)
vs. LH Wandy Rodriguez (8-13, 164.0 IP, 107 K, 4.01 ERA, 1.32 WHIP)

No lineup yet.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 278 other followers