|PITTSBURGH ( GOMEZ )|
SEATTLE ( HERNANDEZ )
|921||PITTSBURGH||+145||Ov 6.5,-115||+155||Ov 6.5,-115|
|922||SEATTLE||-155||Un 6.5,-105||-165||Un 6.5,-105|
|vs Right-handed Starters||39-22||+23.7||26-33||3.9||0.242||0.299||3.4||0.224||0.294|
|Past 7 Games||6-1||+7.8||2-4||5.7||0.264||0.324||3.0||0.196||0.259|
|vs Right-handed Starters||22-30||-7.5||24-25||3.5||0.239||0.301||4.3||0.254||0.308|
|Past 7 Games||3-4||+0.3||5-2||4.6||0.228||0.287||5.1||0.290||0.346|
|6/12/2013||LIRIANO(L)||SAN FRANCISCO||ZITO(L)||12-8||W||-200||7.5 un||O||18||6||1||15||8||1|
|6/13/2013||MORTON(R)||SAN FRANCISCO||CAIN(R)||0-10||L||+115||7.5 ov||O||3||4||3||17||11||0|
|6/14/2013||LOCKE(L)||LA DODGERS||FIFE(R)||3-0||W||-160||8 un||U||8||7||0||6||5||0|
|6/15/2013||CUMPTON(R)||LA DODGERS||KERSHAW(L)||3-5||L||+150||7 ev||O||9||13||1||10||8||1|
|6/16/2013||COLE(R)||LA DODGERS||GREINKE(R)||6-3||W||-125||7.5 un||O||10||6||0||7||5||0|
|6/17/2013||LIRIANO(L)||@ CINCINNATI||LEAKE(R)||1-4||L||110||8 un||U||7||9||1||8||5||0|
|6/18/2013||MORTON(R)||@ CINCINNATI||LATOS(R)||4-0||W||180||8.5 un||U||4||6||0||4||6||0|
|6/19/2013||LOCKE(L)||@ CINCINNATI||ARROYO(R)||1-2||L||120||8 un||U||10||14||1||10||10||0|
|6/20/2013||CUMPTON(R)||@ CINCINNATI||BAILEY(R)||5-3||W||185||8 ev||P||10||7||2||8||5||1|
|6/21/2013||COLE(R)||@ LA ANGELS||WEAVER(R)||5-2||W||150||7.5 ev||U||11||8||0||4||3||0|
|6/22/2013||LIRIANO(L)||@ LA ANGELS||WILLIAMS(R)||6-1||W||120||7.5 ov||U||10||6||0||8||11||1|
|6/23/2013||MORTON(R)||@ LA ANGELS||BLANTON(R)||10-9||W||145||9 un||O||13||7||3||9||8||2|
|6/25/2013||LOCKE(L)||@ SEATTLE||SAUNDERS(L)||9-4||W||-120||7 ov||O||13||7||0||5||4||1|
|6/26/2013||GOMEZ(R)||@ SEATTLE||HERNANDEZ(R)|| |
|7/3/2013|| ||PHILADELPHIA|| || |
|6/14/2013||SAUNDERS(L)||@ OAKLAND||MILONE(L)||3-2||W||165||7.5 un||U||10||9||1||7||6||1|
|6/15/2013||HERNANDEZ(R)||@ OAKLAND||GRIFFIN(R)||4-0||W||110||6.5 ov||U||9||7||0||6||5||0|
|6/16/2013||IWAKUMA(R)||@ OAKLAND||COLON(R)||2-10||L||120||7 un||O||8||5||0||17||10||0|
|6/17/2013||HARANG(R)||@ LA ANGELS||VARGAS(L)||3-11||L||185||8 un||O||7||6||2||20||11||1|
|6/18/2013||BONDERMAN(R)||@ LA ANGELS||BLANTON(R)||3-2||W||185||9 un||U||8||8||0||8||9||0|
|6/19/2013||SAUNDERS(L)||@ LA ANGELS||WILSON(L)||0-1||L||200||8 un||U||2||4||1||6||6||0|
|6/20/2013||HERNANDEZ(R)||@ LA ANGELS||HANSON(R)||9-10||L||-105||7 un||O||12||8||2||17||9||0|
|6/28/2013||IWAKUMA(R)||CHICAGO CUBS||WOOD(L)|| |
|6/29/2013||HARANG(R)||CHICAGO CUBS||SAMARDZIJA(R)|| |
|6/30/2013||BONDERMAN(R)||CHICAGO CUBS||JACKSON(R)|| |
|7/2/2013||SAUNDERS(L)||@ TEXAS||GRIMM(R)|| |
|7/3/2013|| ||@ TEXAS|| || |
|PITTSBURGH: HITTING: The Pirates' two-month casual flirtation with competitiveness was cute while it lasted, before this team fizzled to a 72-win season. This team is still years away. But don't blame OF ANDREW McCUTCHEN, who might be the best all-around player in the division. Of all the ballyhooed outfielders from the 2005 draft, he's the one GMs would most want to build around. OF JOSE TABATA, not so much. He's serviceable and has plus speed, but the six-year extension the Pirates gave him was absurd. 2B NEIL WALKER has settled into a respectable place short of stardom. 3B PEDRO ALVAREZ has a lot of uphill climbing to do if he wants to wake up old expectations. He'll compete with 3B CASEY MCGEHEE for a starting role, but it's most likely that Alvarez moves to first base to back up 1B GARRETT JONES. OFs NATE McLOUTH and ALEX PRESLEY are underwhelming choices for the starting left-field spot. SS CLINT BARMES and C ROD BARAJAS would like to thank the Pirates for wildly overpaying them. |
STARTING PITCHING: JEFF KARSTENS looked pretty decent for much of last year. But that's what happens when you get to log 14 percent of your innings against the lowly Astros. Better teams exposed him for the replacement-level guy he is. Contrary to what a lot of bored, lazy sportswriters wanted you to believe last year, CHARLIE MORTON doesn't pitch like Roy Halladay. At all. JAMES McDONALD could still be special if he cut down his walk rate. ERIK BEDARD was a respectable signing. Even if his shoulder acts up, he cost only $4.5 million for a year. If he's healthy, he's still well above-average. KEVIN CORREIA may only be slightly more effective at striking out hitters than a batting tee, but the Pirates are grateful for the innings he eats. BRAD LINCOLN is the designated fill-in if any of the other starters get hurt (cough, Bedard). In the meantime, he's a swing man.
RELIEF PITCHING: Closer JOEL HANRAHAN has been outstanding since first donning a Pirates uniform in 2009, converting 40-of-44 saves with a 1.83 ERA last season. It makes sense for the rebuilding Pirates to move him, but they'll probably keep the hand they were dealt. There isn't another qualified ninth-inning pitcher in this bullpen though. EVAN MEEK was bit by the shoulder bug. His early season was an unqualified disaster, but he turned it around and regained his form once he came back in September. He should be fully healthy again, and a quiet source of a few saves. CHRIS RESOP is another primary set-up man, but he posted a 4.39 ERA and 1.48 WHIP in 2011. DANIEL McCUTCHEN won't be so lucky with his ERA this year if he doesn't lower his walk rate. He's just not a guy to put much faith in.
|SEATTLE: HITTING: C/DH JESUS MONTERO was brought over from the Yankees to hit in the heart of the order. At age 22, his offensive potential is scary. OF ICHIRO SUZUKI is entering the twilight of his career, but he might still have another .300 season left. 2B DUSTIN ACKLEY is the kind of line-drive hitter who fits well in Safeco, but he needs to catch up to MLB pitching. 1B JUSTIN SMOAK has disappointed, but he's making strides and has 30-HR upside. OF CASPER WELLS could play everyday. He won't hit for average, but has the power Seattle needs. MIKE CARP figures to at least grab early at-bats against righties. He'll strike out, but has lots of power. OF FRANKLIN GUTIERREZ is out for at least a month with a pectoral injury, but will reclaim his starting gig based on his defense. Seattle would love to see OF MICHAEL SAUNDERS step up to replace Gutierrez, but he's shown no signs of being able to handle MLB pitching. C MIGUEL OLIVO still has solid power, but he's an all-or-nothing hitter. 3B CHONE FIGGINS isn't quite done, but he's close. He'll have to battle line-drive hitting KYLE SEAGER for a job. SS BRENDAN RYAN will stick around for defense, but his bat is barely good enough for a regular gig. |
STARTING PITCHING: FELIX HERNANDEZ had a touch of bad luck last year, but he's one of the few pitchers in baseball who's a lock for 200 strikeouts. JASON VARGAS just keeps throwing strikes and letting his defense make plays. He'll get by fine again in spacious Safeco. BLAKE BEAVAN doesn't have a strikeout pitch, but he'll make few mistakes and get some outs thanks to a strong defense. HECTOR NOESI, who also came over from New York with Montero, isn't a big strikeout pitcher, but has good control and is savvy enough to get his shot in Seattle's rotation this year. 37-year-old journeyman KEVIN MILLWOOD will fill out the fifth spot in the rotation after a solid spring. Top prospect DANNY HULTZEN could break into the bigs in 2012. The lefty has the polish of a big leaguer right now, though his ceiling is more good-not-great.
RELIEF PITCHING: Like many rebuilding teams, the Mariners will continue to shop their closer. BRANDON LEAGUE will pick up saves in Seattle, but he's more of a groundball pitcher than a strikeout artist. He'd likely be ticketed for a set-up role elsewhere. If League is traded, the closer role is wide open. SHAWN KELLEY came back from Tommy John surgery late last year and looked as good as ever. If he picks up where he left off last year, he'd be an obvious choice for ninth inning duties. CHANCE RUFFIN, part of the Doug Fister trade, has a strong minor-league track record. He could carve out a big role in this bullpen if he can improve his command.
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ PA SPORTSTICKER NL PREVIEW (PITTSBURGH-SEATTLE) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ |
*Pirates-Mariners Preview* ==========================
By NOEY KUPCHAN STATS Writer
Pittsburgh (47-30) at Seattle (34-44), 3:40 p.m. EDT
The Seattle Mariners' Felix Hernandez was uncharacteristically knocked around last week, but he's been especially good in two career matchups against the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Looking to bounce back from one of his worst performances of the year, Hernandez and the Mariners try to avoid a two-game home sweep to the surging Pirates on Wednesday.
After going 3-0 with a 1.84 ERA in his previous four outings, Hernandez (8-4, 2.71 ERA) yielded season highs of seven runs and 12 hits in five innings Thursday in a 10-9 road defeat to the Los Angeles Angels. The 2010 AL Cy Young Award winner, who had only allowed six homers in his first 15 starts, was taken deep twice and struck out a season-low two but didn't get a decision.
"He just had a bad day, and they started squaring him up," manager Eric Wedge told MLB's official website. "He's human. Every now and again you see that he is human, and it's the big leagues and he just had a bad day."
Hernandez, in contrast, has had his way with Pittsburgh (47-30). The right-hander has gone eight innings in each of his two starts in the series, winning both while compiling a 0.56 ERA. He gave up one run and six hits May 8 in a 2-1 win at PNC Park.
"He never hit that other gear with the velocity," Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said of Hernandez, who's allowed one run in each of his last four interleague starts spanning 30 innings. "But the spin and the sequences, the breaking ball to right-handed hitters and the change to left-handers ... still filthy."
Getting the best of Pittsburgh again may not prove as easy this time around. Starling Marte hit a pair of homers and tripled and Brandon Inge, Russell Martin and Gaby Sanchez also went deep as the Pirates posted their season-high fifth consecutive win, 9-4 on Tuesday.
"They always say that hitting is contagious. It's true, when one guys goes, another one goes," Inge said. "It's something we just rolled with."
Pittsburgh has averaged 7.0 runs and clubbed 12 homers during its run.
Sanchez is 6 for 13 with two home runs in the last three contests, and Pedro Alvarez is batting .378 with five homers and 13 RBIs during a nine-game hitting streak.
Inge and Martin are a combined 7 for 39 (.179) with 15 strikeouts against Hernandez. Travis Snider is 1 for 12.
The Pirates give the ball to Jeanmar Gomez (2-0, 3.07), who's expected to come off the disabled list following a three-week absence. The right-hander allowed a season-high four earned runs before being removed after the first inning with forearm tightness June 2 in a 5-4, 11-inning win over Cincinnati.
In his final rehab start with Triple-A Indianapolis last Wednesday, Gomez struck out four and didn't allow a hit over five scoreless innings.
He yielded two hits and two walks over five scoreless innings in a 4-1 victory over Seattle on May 7, improving to 1-1 with a 1.64 ERA in two career starts against the Mariners.
After placing Franklin Gutierrez back on the disabled list with another hamstring issue, Seattle (34-44) recalled Dustin Ackley on Tuesday. Ackley, who was sent down May 26 after hitting .205 in 45 games, posted a .365 average and 21 runs in 25 contests with Triple-A Tacoma.
"He's earned it," Wedge said of Ackley's return. "You look at his at-bats and the consistency down there, I think he's taken care of some things mentally that he needed to get beyond. And it's paid for him. He's a hitter. He's always hit. He's going to hit. He just needed to get back to where he needed to get to."
|Last Updated: 9/1/2014 8:43:06 PM EST|