Here are some tibdits from the Pirates’ post-game interviews following the 3-0 victory over the Braves:
• The season is only two weeks old, but the Pirates’ team-ERA is now 2.90, the best in the major leagues as of 11 p.m. Friday night.
• Paul Maholm said his foot slipped during his ugly balk while facing Kelly Johnson in the eighth inning. The balk moved Jair Jurrjens to second base and came after a lengthy meeting between Braves manager Bobby Cox and the umpiring crew. There was no harm done. The pitch was a ball, so the count reverted to 2-2 and on the next pitch, Maholm got Johnson to ground out to end the inning.
“I was trying to quick pitch,” Maholm said. “My foot started to slip right before I started to pitch. I tried to throw it. It felt weird, it looked weird and, hopefully, I never do that again. It happened. Luckily it went back to 2-2 and I got the out.”
• Gold Glove center fielder Nate McLouth said his pretty diving catch in the second inning to rob Omar Infante of a base hit should have been more routine.
“I got a bad jump on it, which is why I had to dive,” he said. “It was one of those that ones that was right at me and kind of froze me a little bit. I shouldn’t have had to dive for it.”
Give the guy credit for being honest.
• Speaking of McLouth, he gets a prime view of Maholm from center field, and says it’s about time the 26-year-old starts getting mentioned with the best young left-handers in the majors.
“Being able to watch him from behind in center field, it’s amazing,” McLouth said. “He works in and out, lefties and righties. Not a lot of balls are hit hard on him. His location is amazing. He’s been amazing.”