Francisco Liriano Pitching

Pirates Notebook: Bucs Return to PNC Park

The Pittsburgh Pirates return to PNC Park on this Monday night, and open a five-game series against the St. Louis Cardinals. The Cardinals (62-40) lead the Pirates (61-42) by 1.5 games in the National League Central, and Tuesday’s proceedings feature a double-header to make up a previous contest that was rained out after two innings in April 16. For context as to how long ago that was, Jonathan Sanchez started for the Pirates.

Francisco Liriano Pitching

Francisco Liriano has earned decisions in every start this year, going to 10-4 on the season. (Photo Credit: David Hague)

  • The Pirates return to Pittsburgh off a series loss to the Miami Marlins, as the Fish won 3-2 Sunday behind eight innings and 13 strikeouts from potential Rookie of the Year candidate Jose Fernandez. The loss concluded a post All-Star Break road trip that saw the Pirates go 5-5. Pittsburgh lost two of three in Cincinnati, won three of four in Washington, and lost two of three in Miami.

Roster shuffling

  • Pittsburgh made a minor roster move today, as catcher Michael McKenry was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a left knee sprain. The move was made retroactive to July 28, and outfielder Alex Presley was recalled from Triple-A Indianapolis to take McKenry’s spot on the 25-man active roster. Presley starts tonight in left field. Catcher Tony Sanchez was recalled yesterday to give the Pirates a backstop on the bench, while Travis Snider went to the 15-day DL.

Marte off tonight

  • Outfielder Starling Marte is receiving a standard off day tonight, and Alex Presley replaces him in left field while Jose Tabata will leads off in Clint Hurdle’s batting order. Hurdle said earlier this afternoon the off-day was scheduled in advance for Marte, and it appears there’s nothing more to it than that. Marte seems to be in a sort of funk, akin to what he experienced in the month of May when he hit just .243 after he batted .327 with a .872 OPS in April. Marte entered the All-Star Break at .291/.804, but is hitting .237/.639 in the month of July. On the bright side, Andrew McCutchen returns to the Pirates lineup tonight batting third and playing center-field.

Pitching match-up

  • Francisco Liriano (10-4, 2.23 ERA) toes the rubber for Pittsburgh tonight against the Cardinals’ Jake Westbrook (7-4, 2.95).  The Pirates have had about as much success against Westbrook in the past as they have against any other St. Louis starter, as Westbrook is 1-7 against the Pirates with a 4.81 ERA in 10 career starts. But in his start against the Pirates earlier this season on April 27, Westbrook threw six shutout innings, allowed six hits, and struck out six Pirates. Westbrook did not factor in the decision, as the Pirates later earned a 5-3 victory in St. Louis. For the Bucs, Liriano rebounded from possibly his worst outing of the season with arguably his best start of 2013. Liriano threw seven and two-thirds shutout innings against the Nationals Wednesday, and allowed just two hits and three walks while striking out eight batters to earn his team-high 10th win of the season.



1. Jose Tabata RF
2. Neil Walker 2B
3. Andrew McCutchen CF
4. Pedro Alvarez 3B
5. Russell Martin C
6. Garrett Jones 1B
7. Alex Presley LF
8. Clint Barmes SS
9. Francisco Liriano P


1. Matt Carpenter 2B
2. Carlos Beltran RF
3. Matt Holliday LF
4. Allen Craig 1B
5. Yadier Molina C
6. David Freese 3B
7. Shane Robinson CF
8. Pete Kozma SS
9. Jake Westbrook P




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

Nate Barnes

Nate covers the Pirates beat for Pirates Prospects, and is an English Writing major at the University of Pittsburgh. Nate has covered the Pirates for Pittsburgh Sports Report, and covered Pitt Men's Basketball, Duquesne Men's Basketball, and Pitt Baseball beats prior to this summer. You can find Nate on Twitter @NateBarnes_ where he'll keep you updated on each and every time Clint Barmes breaks up a no-hit bid with one-out in the third inning of ballgames.

Pirates Notebook: David Wright Talks about Adding Alvarez to Derby

Next Story »

Pirates Notebook: Doubleheader Presents Important Opportunity for NL Central

Latest Analysis

  • Keller Supak Hinsz

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

    15 hours 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?

    2 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

    3 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

    4 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

    6 days 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

    7 days 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

    1 week 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
  • Cody Dickson is a lefty with the upside of a middle of the rotation starter. (Photo Credit: Mark Olson)

    The Mental Adjustment that Led to Cody Dickson’s Dominant 2014 Second Half

    2 weeks ago

    Trusting his stuff and not trying to do too much — that has been the key for left-handed pitcher Cody Dickson so far in his professional baseball ...

    Read More
  • Browse More Articles