Pirates Pregame: Martin Back in the Lineup

Russell Martin is back in the lineup for the Pirates tonight, playing catcher and hitting seventh. Martin said the soreness in his neck that has kept him out of a handful of recent games is gone. “There was soreness in there. you can play through some soreness but when it’s your neck and you’re playing a position where there can be some contact  you want your neck to feel like it can support your head,” Martin...

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Pirates Notebook: Four Things We Have Learned About Pirates Pitchers

We took a look on Monday at five Pirates hitters and which stats have a large enough 2013 sample size for us to see year-to-year changes. Now it’s time for the pitchers. Remember a couple important caveats. First, batting statistics tend to be more reliable than pitching statistics, especially in small samples. Second, early-season pitcher performance can often be skewed by which teams the pitcher has faced. I’ve talked...

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First Pitch: Who Wants to Hit a Left-Hander?

The Pittsburgh Pirates have a problem. The team has four spots on the field which could require a platoon, due to the fact that they have so many players who can’t hit left-handers. The obvious player is Garrett Jones, who is established as a platoon player at this point. In his career, Jones has an .851 OPS against right-handers, and a .590 OPS against left-handers. The Pirates acquired Gaby Sanchez last year, aimed at...

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First Pitch: Should Travis Snider Be Starting Against Left-Handers?

It’s a question I get often: Why isn’t Travis Snider starting against left-handers? Sometimes it’s straight up. Sometimes it’s wondering if he’s really done enough to establish a trend in the majors. Sometimes it’s just complaining that Brandon Inge is in the lineup. Snider is off to a good start this year. After tonight’s game he has a .288/.366/.397 line on the year. Coming in to the night...

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McDonald to the DL, Martin Day-to-Day

The Pittsburgh Pirates have placed James McDonald on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to May 1st, with discomfort in his right shoulder. Jeanmar Gomez will make the start tonight. I wrote a few weeks ago about how there were warning signs of a James McDonald injury. Russell Martin has been scratched from the lineup due neck stiffness and Michael McKenry will now catch and bat fifth.  Martin’s status is day-to-day. Josh Harrison...

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