Pirates Notebook: Bucs Continue to Battle Through Close Games

PITTSBURGH, Pa. — The Pittsburgh Pirates have been battling through close games for most of the 2012 season. The largest margin they have lost by was in a 12-3 contest against the St. Louis Cardinals on May 2. There have been 19 one-run games this season, which is tied with Washington for the most in the Majors. On Monday, the Pirates faced the New York Mets at PNC Park. Their first two runs came off lefty starter Johan Santana...

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Pirates Notebook: Why are Teams Pitching to McCutchen?

Center fielder Andrew McCutchen is having a huge month of May. Even after going 0-for-3 on Sunday, McCutchen is hitting for a .396 average (21-for-53) with a double, triple, seven home runs, 13 RBI, 12 runs scored and a .900 slugging percentage in his first 16 games this month. “I don’t know,” McCutchen said with a laugh on why club’s are still pitching to him, after blasting two two-run homers against Detroit on Saturday....

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Pirates Notebook: McCutchen’s Power is Just Fine

A month into the 2012 season, all eyes were on Andrew McCutchen and the fact that he had not yet gone deep for a home run. Game after game, McCutchen continued to pick up hits, doubles, swiping bases, but his lack of long ball power started to raise some concern outside the clubhouse. “As far as power, power comes and power goes,” Pirates Manager Clint Hurdle said in early May. “I’m encouraged that Andrew is not out...

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Pirates Notebook: Verlander No Hits Pirates Through Eight

Right-hander Justin Verlander took a no-hitter into the ninth inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates in Detroit. With one out, Josh Harrison took a 1-2 breaking ball for a single into center field to break up the no-no. Verlander went on to induce two groundouts for the complete game shutout. The only two base runners by the Pirates in the first eight innings were Neil Walker in the first inning and Andrew McCutchen in the sixth, both...

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Pirates Notebook: James McDonald Taking Steps Forward Thanks to Slider

When the Pittsburgh Pirates acquired James McDonald from the Los Angeles Dodgers (along with prospect outfielder Andrew Lambo) for closer Octavio Dotel in 2010, the club knew that they were getting a talented arm. The righty made 11 starts with Pittsburgh that year after spending most of his Major League career with the Dodgers in the bullpen. In McDonald’s first full season with the Pirates in 2011, he led the club in starts...

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Pirates Notebook: Bedard Makes First Start Since Injury

Left-hander Erik Bedard made his first start on Wednesday against the Washington Nationals since his scheduled start was bumped back by two days due to back spasms. The lefty allowed four runs on six hits over six innings. He walked one and struck out seven while throwing 92 pitches, 62 strikes. It marked Bedard’s first outing this season that he allowed more than two earned runs. Three of the four runs that Bedard allowed came...

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