First Pitch: Gerrit Cole Starting to Look Like an Ace When it Counts
Sep20

First Pitch: Gerrit Cole Starting to Look Like an Ace When it Counts

Gerrit Cole has always projected as the future ace of the Pittsburgh Pirates. That future could be sooner than expected. Tonight Cole had another dominant start, which was his third straight outing where he posted a high strikeout total. This time Cole struck out 12 in 6 innings, which is a remarkable total. That gives him 28 strikeouts in 20 innings over his last three starts. He had 29 strikeouts in 35.2 innings in his six starts...

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Pirates Plow Padres, 10-1
Sep19

Pirates Plow Padres, 10-1

Pirates’ manager Clint Hurdle said after last night’s 3-2 loss that the Pirates “gotta keep plowin’” following their third straight loss to the San Diego Padres. Thursday, the Pirates plowed the Padres in the form of a 10-1 victory. “We were able to go out and play a complete ballgame,” Hurdle said. “More often than not those games start on the mound. And it did again today.” Pedro Alvarez sounded the charge...

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Pirates Notebook: You Learn Something New Every Start
Sep16

Pirates Notebook: You Learn Something New Every Start

The lasting image of Gerrit Cole’s first major league start wasn’t when he drove in a run, but a pitch he threw to the first batter he faced. With two strikes and Gregor Blanco at bat, Cole reared back and delivered a fastball with the high heat Pirates fans had been waiting for ever since he was drafted No. 1 overall in 2011. Blanco swung right through it, and Cole owned his first career strikeout. It’s now been...

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First Pitch: And Now There’s No Doubt About Cole in the Playoffs
Sep15

First Pitch: And Now There’s No Doubt About Cole in the Playoffs

The last two nights I’ve been writing about the playoff rotation and how that has been shaping up. The main focus in the comments was on Gerrit Cole. I didn’t have Cole as one of my top four starters for the playoffs, putting him behind Charlie Morton and a healthy Wandy Rodriguez. Last night I wrote about the difference between the Nationals shutting down Stephen Strasburg and the Pirates potentially shutting down Cole....

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Byrd, Tabata Homer to Lead Bucs Over Cubs, 2-1
Sep14

Byrd, Tabata Homer to Lead Bucs Over Cubs, 2-1

Five innings into Saturday’s contest, the Pirates couldn’t seem to solve Chicago starter Scott Baker. After six, the Pirates still hadn’t solved him. But Jose Tabata hit a solo home run in the sixth off Baker to tie the game, and Marlon Byrd went deep to right-center field off reliever James Russell in the seventh to put Pittsburgh on top, 2-1. The score held, as Tony Watson pitched a perfect eighth inning while Mark...

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