CLEARWATER, Fla. -- Outfielder Starling Marte stepped to the plate with one out in the bottom of the 9th inning at McKechnie Field on Wednesday with a streak on the line. Marte connected for a single into center field to mark seven straight hits this spring. An impressive feat for one of the Bucs top prospects.

"Seven straight hits is a lot," Pirates Manager Clint Hurdle said. "I never got seven straight hits. He looks very, very confident at the plate."

So far this spring, the 23-year-old is batting .692 (9-for-13) with four runs, a double, two homers, three RBI and a stolen base over six games.

"He’s seeing the ball well," Hurdle said. "He’s put the ball on the ground with a bunt, swung the bat, drove a ball big time to left-center field [Wednesday]. He looks good at the plate."...

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