HOUSTON — Rod Barajas and Michael McKenry have combined for 17 home runs. Among NL clubs, only the Braves (22) and Rockies (21) have gotten more homers from their catchers. The last right-handed catcher to hit 10 homers in a season for the Pirates was Jason Kendall, who hit 14 in 2000.
»»» Today will be Andrew McCutchen’s first non-injury related day off. McCutchen also didn’t get any break around the All-Star Game. “It’s time for him to get a blow,” manager Clint Hurdle said, adding that he plans to give a few other regulars some down time over the next week or so.
»»» The Pirates have won nine games in a row against the Astros. Since being swept by Houston in a three-game series last August at Minute Maid Park, the Pirates are 11-2 against the Astros.
»»» The Pirates on Monday open a three-game set against the Cubs in Chicago. It’s the latest in a season the Pirates have played their first game at Wrigley Field in the modern era (since 1900).
Game 101: Pirates @ Astros, 2:05 p.m. ET
Pirates (58-42): 1. Starling Marte cf, 2. Alex Presley lf, 3. Neil Walker 2b, 4. Garrett Jones rf, 5. Casye McGehee 1b, 6. Pedro Alvarez 3b, 7. Michael McKenry c, 8. Jordy Mercer ss, 9. James McDonald rhp (10-4, 3.15)
Astros (34-68): 1. Jose Altuve 2b, 2. Marwin Gonzalez ss, 3. Chris Johnson 3b, 4. Scott Moore 1b, 5. J.D. Martinez lf, 6. Brian Bogusevic rf, 7. Chris Snyder c, 8. Jordan Schafer cf, 9. Lucas Harrell rhp (7-7, 4.07)