MIAMI — I remember walking to The Ballpark in Arlington on a 200-degree day a couple of years ago with Dejan Kovacevic. In the distance loomed the new stadium for the Dallas Cowboys. It was freakin’ huge and white and shimmered in the intense midday heat. “It looks like it’s come here to take over our planet,” DK noted dryly. I had that thought today as I drove up to Marlins Ballpark. It’s massive and white on the outside, and, um, lime green and blue on the inside. I’d post a pic for ya, but I’m having techinical problems that make that impossible. Your eyes should thank me.
Tear your gaze away from the aquariums inside the backstop and you’ll notice the outfield is very roomy. “Infield’s very quick, outfield’s very big,” manager Clint Hurdle said. “There are some nuances to the outfield, a notch in left-center. We went out today for a half-hour and got in our defensive work, acquainting our players with the field. It will be fun to play here.”
»»» Stay mad: Hurdle wants RHP Brad Lincoln, who’ll make a spot start tonight, to keep the same approach that’s worked so well for him out of the bullpen. “We need him to continue in the mode, the method and the madness he’s been pitching with,” Hurdle said. “He’s been aggressive, using his fastball on both sides of the plate really well, really working it in. The breaking ball has become real sharp with a lot of depth to it. The changeup is in play. This is the most efficient and the sharpest I’ve seen him since I’ve been here. His confidence is in a good place.” Lincoln is starting in place of LHP Erik Bedard, who gets extra time to recover from back spasms. Bedard should be good to go Wednesday in Washington.
»»» Goin’ streaking: The Pirates have won their past six home games that have gone into extra innings, dating back to June 3, 2011. According to Elias, it’s the longest active streak in the majors. and matched the longest string by the Pirates since at least 1978
»»» Minor matter: Lefty Justin Wilson was pulled from his start today for Triple-A Indy after four innings due to soreness in his right groin. He’ll be re-evaluated tomorrow.
Game 35: Pirates @ Marlins, 7:10 p.m. ET
Pirates (16-18): 1. Jose Tabata rf, 2. Neil Walker 2b, 3. Andrew McCutchen cf, 4. Pedro Alvarez 3b, 5. Casey McGehee 1b, 6. Alex Presley lf, 7. Rod Barajas c, 8. Clint Barmes ss, 9. Brad Lincoln rhp (2-0, 0.63)
Marlins (18-16): 1. Jose Reyes ss, 2. Omar Infante 2b, 3. Hanley Ramirez 3b, 4. Logan Morrison lf, 5. Giancarlo Stanton rf, 6. Gaby Sanchez 1b, 7. Emil Bonifacio cf, 8. John Buck c, 9. Anibal Sanchez rhp (2-0, 2.01)