News & Notes from 9/3 & 9/4
The game didn’t end last night until after midnight (thanks to the rain delay) I headed back to the ballpark this morning for the final game of the Reds series. I didn’t get a chance to recap the games so I’m just going to highlight parts of them along with news and notes.
The Pirates lost this afternoon to the Reds, 9-4.
McCutchen lead off the game with a Solo-Home Run off Queto. (The only run he allowed, just three hits in six innings pitched with six strikeouts.)
Clement came in to pinch hit in the seventh and hit a two-run homerun. Since being recalled from Triple-A Indy he is 3-for-5 with two Home Runs.
Pedro Alvarez hit his eighth homerun of the season in the ninth inning and it was smoked. When Pedro connects, it is hit so hard. If you have seen one in person you know exactly what I mean.
Ledezma and Jackson were horrific in the game today. Combined they pitched just one inning but gave up four hits, and five runs and a walk.
“[It was a] relatively close game, and next thing you know, it gets out of hand,” manager John Russell said. “We’re going to have to find a way to stop that. We’ve got to find guys that fit in to those roles later. The seventh can be a tough inning because you can be in the meat of the lineup. We’re going to have to find a way to get through that.”
Karstens picked up his seventh loss of the season. His ERA is now at 4.47
Other News & Notes:
- Pirates outfielder Andrew McCutchen has been named a preliminary winner of the Heart and Hustle Award, which is handed out by Major League Baseball’s Players Alumni Association. Since 2005, the award is annually presented to an active player who demonstrates a passion for the game of baseball and best embodies the values, spirit and traditions of the game.
McCutchen was recognized as his team’s recipient prior to Tuesday’s game against the Reds.
There are 30 preliminary winners, one from each club, for the award. An overall winner will be determined through votes from active players and alumni and will be announced at the Legends for Youth Dinner on Nov. 5 in New York.
The 2009 Heart and Hustle Award was given to St. Louis’ Albert Pujols. David Eckstein (2005), Craig Biggio (2006 and 2007) and Grady Sizemore (2008) round out the list of past winners.
Steve Pearce underwent surgery on his left knee today. Yesterday Pearce talked about his season cut short and the surgery:
“I’m not actually worried about the effects,” Pearce said over the phone. “Actually, I think this can be a great thing for my career. I can’t be the player I want to be with this bum knee. I think I can really benefit by getting this taken care of.”
“When I come back after this, I’m going to be a whole new player, a better player,” Pearce said. “Especially with this new approach that I’ve had this year to be more patient, now I’ll also be able to explode on balls like I have in the past.
“I will be 100 percent in Spring Training and ready to fight for a job.”
- The Pirates claimed claimed right-hander Chris Resop and Chan Ho Park off waivers on Wed.
Resop, With Triple-A Gwinnett, went 6-3 with a 2.09 ERA in 15 starts.
“Adding Resop should help us,” manager John Russell said. “He’s been doing very well. He has shown some good numbers and hopefully he’ll be a guy who can come in and help us out.”
The Pirates will be the seventh different team that Park has played for. This season he appeared in 29 games for the Yankees allowing 22 earned runs on 40 hits and 12 walks in 35 1/3 innings.
Both Park and Resop will go into the pen. Resop is expected to be in Pittsburgh Thursday; Park will arrive on Friday.
- Steven Jackson was Designated for Assignment.
- Steve Pearce was moved to the 60-day Disabled List.
- Andy LaRoche and James McDonald spent years playing together in the Dodgers minor league system. Andy had a lot of good things to say about McDonald, who will make his Pirates debut starting on Thursday.
“I think to come to a park like this with the stuff that he’s got, let’s wait and see the results, but I think he’s got a good chance here,” LaRoche said, offering his own personal scouting report. “He’s got good stuff. He’s throws firm. He’s got a great curveball. He locates well. I always knew that he had good stuff and would be a big league player.”
“I’m happy that they want me here,” McDonald said. “There trying to do things here by building with youth. They have a lot of good young players. I’m happy to be a part of it.”
Manager John Russell said a lot of nice things about McDonald as well.
“I’ve been talking about this guy for a year and a half,” Russell said. “I saw this guy pitch last year and he was dominant against us. Live arm. Velocity. Good breaking ball, changeup. He’s got the arm to be a very good starting pitcher. I’m very excited about it.
“He’s a very talented pitcher. I was surprised when [general manager] Neal [Hunginton] called and told us we got him. It’s a guy that I kind of myself targeted. I’m glad we finally got him.”
- Mike Leake lost control of his fastball during Tuesday’s game in the second inning and hit Andrew McCutchen on the back of his neck. McCutchen fell to the ground and was eventually helped up by the medical staff and taken off the field. He was later diagnosed with a neck contusion.
“You never want to see a ball up around the head,” Bucs manager John Russell said. It’s a scary thing. I was concerned about Andrew.”
The Bucs continued to rally in that second inning, scoring six runs.
“You could tell he was shook up after he hit McCutchen,” Reds manager Dusty Baker said. “And it led to a big inning.”
“I’m not going to say I wasn’t thinking about it,” said Leake, “but I was trying not to.”
In the third inning when Leake came up to bat, Maholm hit him with a 1-0 fastball on the side of his knee. Home plate umpire then warned both benches.
Maholm declined comment on that pitch afterward, saying only: “Getting hit is one thing. Getting hit up there is a scary deal. It’s no fun to watch and you just hope and pray he’s OK.”
- Evan Meek picked up his first career base hit in just his second career at bat this season.
Meek also threw 50 pitches in the 1 2/3 innings he pitched. Evan faced seven batters and gave up two runs.
“Definitely throwing 50 pitches is a struggle,” Meek said. “You’re going to have outings like that. You’re not going to be as sharp as you can be every time. Thank God we had a little cushion there.”
- Joel Hanrahan picked up his first career save as a Bucco. (His last save was on May 24, 2009 while with the Nationals)
“[I was] a little nervous. I’m not going to lie,” Hanrahan said. “It’s been a while since I’ve been in that save situation, and for some reason, that ninth inning’s just a little bit different. I’ve never known why, but anytime you go out there for your first save of the year it’s a little bit different.”
“I put a lot of pressure on myself when I was in Washington,” he said. “A couple bad games here or there and I was trying to lower my ERA every time I went out there. Now, I just go out there with confidence in the role that I’m in now and believe in myself. It’s kind of the same thing you’ve got to do if you go into that role.”
- @Maholm28: Back to the park looking for a series win. Thanks for everyones support congrats to @hanrahan4457 for his 1st bucco save.
@Maholm28: Also hoping cutch isn’t too sore today we need him back out to set the tempo.
- I noticed this young kid at PNC Park on Tuesday wearing a ballcap with his ears tucked under, like Pedro Alvarez does. I thought it was strange because I’ve never seen anyone else wear their hat that way. I asked the boy why he tucks his ears in his cap and he said “I want to be just like Pedro when I grow up.” How adorable it that?
- Daniel McCutchen was moved to the bullpen a few days ago. (via @LangoschMLB)
On being asked to move to the ‘pen: “I’m good with it. I think I can maybe work some things out. I feel really close and maybe it will be an opportunity for me to get over the hump and pitch the way I want to pitch.”
On what areas of his game he is wanting to target first: “Probably consistency with my off-speed stuff and working ahead in the count. There have been a lot of things. Last year, the first half of the year was kind of up-and-down and then I really got on a roll. This year, I haven’t really gotten on a roll. I’m going to keep pressing through it and try to get on that roll.”
On the challenges of adapting to a new role: “I pitched out of the ‘pen in college. How relevant that is – that was my sophomore year – I don’t know. But I’ve been asking a lot of guys about their routine and what they do. They are going to help me with that. Hopefully it will be an easy transition.”