The Pittsburgh Pirates won 5-4 in Bradenton over the Baltimore Orioles on Thursday afternoon. Cole Tucker was the hero of the game, hitting a home run in the seventh inning that gave the Pirates a 4-3 lead at the time. He then followed that up with a walk-off homer in the ninth. The Pirates scored all of their runs on solo homers. Patrick Kivlehan, Adam Frazier and Erik Gonzalez each added a home run.
On the pitching side, Jordan Lyles allowed two runs (one earned) over four innings, giving up three hits, one walk and picking up three strikeouts. Francisco Liriano tossed two shutout innings on no hits, one walk and two strikeouts. Geoff Hartlieb and Nick Burdi each allowed one run in their only inning, though both of them struck out three batters. Brandon Waddell pitched a scoreless ninth for the win.
Here are the homers from Tucker:
— Altoona Curve (@AltoonaCurve) March 7, 2019
The Pirates have a doubleheader against the Toronto Blue Jays today, with one game taking place in Bradenton and the other in Dunedin. Both games start at 1 PM and the home game will be broadcast live on AT&T SportsNet. Here are the lineups for the games, starting with the home tilt.
- Starling Marte CF
- Jung Ho Kang 3B
- Francisco Cervelli 1B
- Jose Osuna RF
- Patrick Kivlehan LF
- Kevin Newman SS
- Jacob Stallings C
- Alfredo Reyes 2B
- Trevor Williams P
The late inning replacements (in order, same positions as above, minus the pitcher spot) will be JB Shuck, Jesse Medrano (first spring game), Will Craig, Bligh Madris, Lolo Sanchez, Stephen Alemais, Arden Pabst and Rodolfo Castro. The extras on the bench will be Deon Stafford, Gabriel Brito, Jerrick Suiter, Robbie Glendinning, Logan Hill, Hunter Owen and Bralin Jackson.
After Trevor Williams, the Pirates will send out Mitch Keller, Aaron Slegers and Dovydas Neverauskas.
Here’s the road lineup and extras:
- Pablo Reyes CF
- Melky Cabrera DH
- Colin Moran 3B
- Josh Bell 1B
- Kevin Kramer 2B
- Erik Gonzalez SS
- Jason Martin LF
- Bryan Reynolds RF
- Steven Baron C
The late inning replacements (in order, same positions as above, minus the DH spot) will be Jared Oliva, Dylan Busby, Eric Weiss, Adrian Valerio, Oneil Cruz, Chris Sharpe, Randolph Gassaway and Jason Delay. The rest of the bench includes Casey Hughston, Mitchell Tolman, John Bormann, Raul Hernandez and Ben Bengtson.
After starter Rookie Davis, the Pirates will send out JT Brubaker, Eduardo Vera, Luis Escobar and Michael Feliz.
Here’s an interesting pair of notes from the Dominican (link is in Spanish). Starling Marte said that he would out of action due to right thumb discomfort. While that was never reported, it had to be minor because he spent time at Pirate City hitting in simulated games, so he wasn’t out too long. In that same article, Gregory Polanco said that he will be the DH in games by March 15th. That doesn’t mean big league games though, he could be on the minor league side because they start games at Pirate City on Tuesday. He believes he could return on or slightly after May 1st.
The Pirates will be home against the Minnesota Twins on Saturday afternoon. The game will be broadcast live on AT&T SportsNet and replayed on MLB Network (see TV schedule linked above). Clay Holmes will make the start and he will be followed by Felipe Vazquez, Keone Kela, Richard Rodriguez and Tyler Lyons.
John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball.
When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.