Pregame: New faces


You’re going to like Jason Grilli.

Joe Capozzi, the fantastic beat writer for the Marlins, sent me a message yesterday saying that Grilli, who played a few years ago in Miami, is one of his favorite people in the game. After talking with Grilli twice since he signed with the Pirates, it’s easy to see why Capozzi gushed. Grilli is honest, down-to-earth and hot-damn excited about to be wearing Black and Yellow. “I’m very excited to be here, with all that’s going on in this city,” he said this afternoon. “I just want to mix in.”

»»» Steve Pearce and Ronny Cedeno were activated today from the DL. Chris Leroux, Josh Harrison and Pedro Ciriaco were optioned back to Triple-A Indy. No surprises there.

»»» The Pirates will appear on Fox’s Saturday Game of the Week on back-to-back Saturdays — Aug. 13 against the arch-foe Brewers in Milwaukee and Aug. 20 against the Reds at PNC Park. “We are excited for the opportunity to showcase not only our exciting team, but the passion of our fans, the best ballpark in the country and our great city to a national audience,” prez Frank Coonelly said in a prepared statement. Both games will start at 4:11 p.m. ET. The postgame fireworks show that had been set for Aug. 20 has been cancelled.

»»» The Pirates took their team photo this afternoon.

Lineups for today’s game:

Cardinals (51-47) – 1. Ryan Theriot ss, 2. Jon Jay cf, 3. Albert Pujols 1b, 4. Matt Holliday lf, 5. Lance Berkman rf, 6. David Freese 3b, 7. Yadier Molina c, 8. Nick Punto 2b, 9. Chris Carpenter rhp (5-7, 3.69)

Pirates (51-45) – 1. Alex Presley lf, 2. Chase d’Arnaud 3b, 3. Neil Walker 2b, 4. Andrew McCutchen cf, 5. Lyle Overbay 1b, 6. Garrett Jones 3b, 7. Ronny Cedeno ss, 8. Mike McKenry c, 9. Paul Maholm lhp (6-9, 3.06)