Pirates Notebook: Losing Streak Reaches Five; Karstens, Walker Feel Good After Sim Game

The Pittsburgh Pirates streak extended to five games after losing their second straight in Cincinnati on Tuesday. After falling in extra-innings on Monday night, the Pirates were able to put up double-digits in hits (11), but still struggled on the offensive side of the ball, plating just three runs as the Reds scored five as their current struggles continue.

With the loss, the Bucs are just three games over .500 (72-69) after sitting with a 16 over mark to start the month of August. Their five game losing streak is their longest since mid-April (also five games) as they’ve fallen nine of their past 11 games overall in September.

The lone runs that the club was able to plate came from the long ball.

Alex Presley took a 3-2 sinker from the Reds’ Mike Leake with one out in the first and went deep to right field. It marked No. 9 on the season for Presley. Gaby Sanchez connected for a pinch-hit two-run homer to bring the game within one run in the seventh inning. It was his sixth on the season. The Pirates had several opportunities to score runs, but several double plays, a pick off at first base and five left stranded was the difference maker in the loss.

Kevin Correia made his second spot start in place of Jeff Karstens, who threw a simulated game at Great American Ballpark on Tuesday. After the Pirates took a quick one-run lead, Correia quickly gave it back in the bottom of the first.

Brandon Phillips took the first pitch from Correia, an 89 mph fastball, and launched it for a line drive solo-homer to left field. Correia needs 25 pitches to get through the frame, leaving two runners stranded.

A series of weird plays occurred in the second inning, in which the Reds were able to score three runs.

A leadoff walk started the inning for Correia. With one out, pitcher Mike Leake showed bunt, which drew the infield in, then hit a slug bunt that went to left field to put two runners on. Phillips stepped to the plate next and ripped an RBI double off the glove of Clint Barmes at short that deflected and flew into left field.

Two more runs scored after a wild pitch and an error. Catcher Michael McKenry chased down the wild throw and attempted to throw home to nail Leake at the plate, but the pitcher slid home and kicked the ball away allowing Phillips to trot home for the third run of the inning.

Correia went on to allow his leadoff batter to reach in each of his next two frames, but after the lengthy second, was able to toss up four zeros before handing the ball over to the bullpen. Overall, Correia was charged with four runs on seven hits over six innings. He walked three and struck out two while throwing 94 pitches, 58 strikes.


Karstens, Walker Take Part In Simulated Game

Jeff Karstens (right hip flexor) threw a 30-pitch simulated game at Great American Ballpark on Tuesday afternoon, which was followed by 30 warm up pitches. The right-hander said that he was pain free afterwards.

Neil Walker (low back tightness) took swings during Karstens sim game at the field today, and too, said he felt good afterwards. Manager Clint Hurdle said that he would be open to using Walker off the bench in a pinch-hit situation if needed on Tuesday. Walker will continue with his workouts on Wednesday, and with the club’s off day on Thursday, is expected to return to the lineup for Friday’s game in Chicago. Walker has been out of the lineup for 13 straight games.


Hughes, Phillips Settle On-Field Dispute

Things got heated between the Pirates reliever Jared Hughes and Reds’ second baseman Brandon Phillips in the eighth inning of Pittsburgh’s loss in 14 innings. After Hughes hit Phillips by a pitch, the infielder flipped the ball back to Hughes on the mound, before both players bickered back and forth. Several Pirates players were angered, including veteran A.J. Burnett who came out on to the field to yell at Phillips. The heated argument was broke up from the umpires, as both benches were warned.

After the game last night, Phillips tweeted:


According to Rob Biertempfel of the Tribune, both Hughes and Phillips resolved the dispute prior to the game on Tuesday after Andrew McCutchen set up a phone conversation. In the report, Phillips believed that Hughes yelled “boy” to the second baseman as he went to first base, which he thought was a racial slur. Hughes declined making such comment.

Both players chatted by phone for several moments to work through the issue themselves. The Pirates investigated the matter, as Major League Baseball looked into the situation, but allowed the two players to resolve it.


Rotation Set for Chicago

The Pirates set their rotation against Chicago, which kicks off Friday for a four-game set. Kevin Correia will remain in the rotation, getting a third spot start in place of Karstens. The rotation will be as follows: James McDonald Friday, Jeff Locke Saturday, Wandy Rodriguez Sunday and Correia on Monday.

Enjoy this story? Pirates Prospects will be switching to a subscription site on 4/13, so that we can continue bringing you the best Pirates coverage there is. For a very small monthly price, you can continue getting articles like this, along with coverage from every minor league city. Get more information here, and subscribe today!

Share This Article

Pirates Notebook: Missed Opportunities Hurt Bucs in Extras

Next Story »

Pirates Notebook: Should McDonald Skip A Start in the Rotation?

  • Lee Young

    Since we were 16 games over, we have now
    lost 22 of 31. That is a .290 win pct. We have regressed to the 2010
    Pirates. That is ‘Astrosesque’.

    I see MAYBE 6 more wins out of
    this team. If anyone thinks we can go 10-11 (OR 9-12), God Bless you. I
    don’t have THAT much faith!


Latest Analysis

  • Arquimedes Caminero

    Breaking Down the Final Pirates Roster Battles After Today’s Cuts

    1 day ago

    With less than a week remaining in camp, the Pittsburgh Pirates made their latest round of cuts this morning, sending three relievers to minor league camp, including ...

    Read More
  • Keller Supak Hinsz

    Even With the New Draft Rules, the Pirates Are Still Loading Up on Projectable Pitchers

    3 days ago

    From 2008-2011, the Pittsburgh Pirates spent a lot of resources on projectable pitchers out of high school. So far, this approach has led to breakout performances from ...

    Read More
  • Josh Bell made the move to first base over the off-season. (Photo credit: David Hague)

    Why Should You Care About Prospects?

    4 days ago

    Yesterday I had a shorter day than usual. The Pirates had cuts at the MLB level, and a road game. The day was shortened at Pirate City, ...

    Read More
  • Gregory Polanco

    Q&A: Trading Prospects For Rentals, Polanco Concerns, Meadows vs Appel

    5 days ago

    I missed the Q&A last week due to a common problem in Spring Training: I forgot what day it was. It was around 6:00 that I was ...

    Read More
  • Nick Kingham f

    Improving His Two-Seam Fastball will Make Nick Kingham a More Effective Pitcher

    6 days ago

    With Jameson Taillon returning from Tommy John surgery, and unlikely to make an impact at the Major League level early in the year, the top prospect to ...

    Read More
  • Arquimedes Caminero 3

    The Roster Situations That Could Impact the Makeup of the Pirates Bullpen

    1 week ago

    There are less than two weeks remaining in Spring Training, and the one area where the Pittsburgh Pirates had actual position battles is heating up. There were ...

    Read More
  • Jordan Luplow

    How the Pirates are Trying to Stay Ahead of the Curve With the New Draft Rules

    1 week ago

    The 2011 Collective Bargaining Agreement brought a lot of changes to Major League Baseball. The biggest change for the Pittsburgh Pirates came in the draft. From 2008-2011, ...

    Read More
  • Alen Hanson

    The Key For Alen Hanson to Help the Pirates in the Majors This Year

    1 week ago

    When the Pittsburgh Pirates moved Alen Hanson to second base last year, part of the plan was to get him to the majors faster by putting him at ...

    Read More
  • Tyler Glasnow 2

    What the Stats Don’t Tell You About Tyler Glasnow

    2 weeks ago

    The stat line for Tyler Glasnow’s start at Pirate City yesterday looked great: 3 IP, 0 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 1 K. The lone run ...

    Read More
  • JaCoby Jones Josh Bell

    JaCoby Jones Did Fine in the Move to Shortstop, But Needs to Cut Down on Strikeouts

    2 weeks ago

    The Pittsburgh Pirates drafted JaCoby Jones as an outfielder in the third round of the 2013 draft, then surprised everyone the following year when they moved him ...

    Read More
  • Browse More Articles