Pre-game News and Notes 4/9: Rockies @ Pirates
The Pittsburgh Pirates (5-3) will face the Colorado Rockies (4-2) tonight at 7:05 PM/ET at PNC Park.
Right-hander Charlie Morton will face Righty Greg Reynolds.
Morton is coming off a fantastic spring and first start of the season. He limited the St. Louis Cardinals to just one run on three hits over six innings with five walks and two strikeouts.
The 27-year-old is making his first start at home this season after struggling at PNC last year. Morton posted a 7.57 ERA last year and frequently heard boo’s when he was on the mound.
Morton told Colin Dunlap of the Post-Gazette, “Heard them, oh yeah. But look at what my ERA was. At the beginning of the year, I had a 14.00 ERA. I deserved it, right?
“You can’t replace love and support that you get when you are down, when you are going through a tough time, when you are struggling. I’m so grateful to the people who stuck with me. I am extremely grateful to people who stopped me on the street and said kind things.
“I’m excited about getting out there and pitching for them again. Really, I mean that. There were a lot of people in this city who stuck with me.”
Morton has made a few adjustments and is much more mentally confident on the mound –and his numbers have proven that.
Reynolds will be making his first big league start since September of 2008. The 25-year-old is a former first round pick (2nd overall) in the 2006 draft.
The right-hander struggled in 2008 (2-8 record, with an 8.13 ERA) and faced arm injuries in 2009.
Reynolds was called up from Triple-A Colorado Spring after Ubaldo Jimenez was placed on the 15-day dl.
- Jose Tabata extended his hitting streak to eight games. He’s had at least one hit in each of his eight games this season.
- Mike Crotta surrendered his first hit of the season (four appearances) in the 7th inning of last night’s game. He still has yet to allow a run this year.
- Manager Clint Hurdle has a hard policy of not allowing a reliever to pitch in three straight games.
According to Jenifer Lanogsch of MLB.com, Hurdle developed this firm stance after numerous studies as a hitting coach. He found consistent increases in injuries and ineffectiveness when relievers pitched three consecutive games.
Hurdle told Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com, “It just doesn’t make any sense. [There is] too much to lose. The risk versus the reward isn’t good enough for me. You want to be tied to their arms as much as you can, not just to the results.”
Dexter Fowler CF, Jonathan Herrera 2B, Carlos Gonzalez LF, Troy Tulowitzki SS, Seth Smith RF, Jose Lopez 3B, Ty Wigginton 1B, Jose Morales, Greg Reynolds RHPPirates:
Jose Tabata LF, Neil Walker 2B, Andrew McCutchen CF, Lyle Overbay 1B, Pedro Alvarez 3B, Ryan Doumit C, Garrett Jones RF, Josh Rodriguez SS, Charlie Morton RHP