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Pittsburgh sports talk with the Trib columnist

Final: Pirates 11, Mets 2

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media

Looking ahead to first pitch …

Game: Pirates (19-16) vs. New York Mets (14-18)

Starters: LHP Francisco Liriano vs. LHP Jonathon Niese

Time: 1:10 p.m.

Site: Citi Field, New York

TV, radio: Root Sports, 93.7 The Fan

Here’s the official live box score.

Here’s the Pirates’ lineup …

  1. Starling Marte, LF
  2. Jordy Mercer, 2B
  3. Andrew McCutchen, CF
  4. Gaby Sanchez, 1B
  5. Jose Tabata, RF
  6. Brandon Inge, 3B
  7. Michael McKenry, C
  8. Clint Barmes, SS
  9. Liriano, LHP

Here’s TribLIVE’s Pirates page. Beat writer Rob Biertempfel is on the scene.

Author: Dejan Kovacevic

Dejan Kovacevic, a lifelong Pittsburgher, is an award-winning sports columnist for Trib Total Media covering the Steelers, Penguins, Pirates, Pitt and, recently, his fourth Olympics in Sochi, Russia. He also appears on WPXI-TV's 'Subway Final Word’ and hosts a weekly show on TribLIVE Radio. For 2011, he was named one of the country's top four columnists by the AP Sports Editors. For 2012, he was named one of the country's top three columnists by the National Headliners. For 2013, he was named the state's top columnist by the Keystone Press Awards and top columnist in Western Pennsylvania by the Golden Quills.


  1. JAL says:

    JAL’s Little Old Man Morning Links


    1- MLB Transactions

    2-MLB Trade Rumors-Pirates

    3 Go Buccos- Pirate News (from external sources)

    4 Pittsburgh Pirates Stats

    BLOGS and such

    5—Pirates Prospects

    First Pitch: Garrett Jones/Gaby Sanchez Could be the New Moneyball

    Prospect Watch: Brown and Alderson Pick Up the Slack for the Indy Rotation

    Pirates Notebook: Four Things We Have Learned About Pirates Pitchers

    6 Bucs Dugout

    Garrett Jones three-run homer helps Pirates even series with Mets

    Tony Sanchez to join Pirates in New York


    Game 36: Pirates 7 Mets 3

    8 The Green Weenie

    Bucs Score Early In 7-3 Win

    9 Rumbunter

    Who Are These Guys: Pittsburgh Pirates Starting Rotation Doing Unlikely Things

    Well, This Sucks

    10 Raise the Jolly Roger

    Pirates 7 Mets 3

  2. JAL says:

    NEWSPAPERS and MAGAZINES and Other Media

    11 New York Daily News

    Shaun Marcum shelled in Mets loss to Pittsburgh Pirates

    12 Rant Sports

    Pirates Neil Walker Inching Closer to Return

    13 MLB

    10 things to know about Travis Snider

    14 New York Times

    Struggles Continue for Mets and Marcum

    15 City of Champions

    Pittsburgh Pirates: Are the Bucs in danger of overusing Mark Melancon?

    16 CBS Sports

    Pittsburgh at New York Game Preview

    17 Sweetspot

    Five things to watch this weekend

    18 PBC Site

    Replay it again: Jones’ homer fuels Wandy’s win

    Bucs return let Bell spend quality time with his mom


    19 Baseball Prospectus

    This Week in Catcher Framing, 5/10

    20 Fangraphs

    The Worst of the Best: The Week(s)’s Wildest Swings

  3. JAL says:

    Little Old Man Bill Cosby 1967 Best known in 1967 as a comedian Cosby took the rework of a Stevie Wonder song to number 4 in August of 1967. He also shows why he a comedian, not a singer.

  4. Thundercrack says:

    2 shortstops. The crazy shifts from the FO are back. :-)

    And I still think Pedro should play just about everyday.

  5. Bizrow says:

    + 1

  6. JohninOshkosh says:

    Today’s lineup for the Metsies according to rotoinfo:

    Ruben Tejada SS, Daniel Murphy 2B, David Wright 3B, John Buck C, Justin Turner 1B, Marlon Byrd RF, Andrew Brown LF, Juan Lagares CF, Jonathon Niese P

    Jordany Valdespin not starting today to protect his ribs.

  7. Dave G says:

    Got a promotion this week and I’ve been moved to day-turn.

    Best part of all—beside the big raise, of course—will be getting to see ALL of the Pens and Pirates games! :-)

  8. Drew71 says:

    Congrats! Beers on you

  9. JRay3 says:

    According to 24/7 twitter- Tony Sanchez with team in case of rainout and DH tomorrow as Martin unavailable rest of series but not going on DL.

    Welker headed back to Indy to make room for Liriano.

  10. Eric Bowser says:

    Nothing more frustrating than seeing Pedro have a good game and then he sits because a lefty is starting. The man needs to be an everyday player for this team to win. Period.

  11. JohninOshkosh says:

    I was hoping he would start today. But maybe Clint wants a catcher with Major League experience calling Liriano’s first game as a Bucco.

    Hope he starts tomorrow though. Anxious to see him play. I am favor prospects making their major league debuts on the road. Less pressure, I think.

  12. Drew71 says:

    I don’t look into this that deeply.

    Many managers traditionally use day games to get the bench some playing time.

    Look at the entire lineup. I know some of it is injury dependent. But not all.

    I’d be more concerned if Pedro sat against most lefties, including night games.

  13. Drew71 says:

    When I saw he was called up, I almost…I almost…couldn’t…breathe

  14. JohninOshkosh says:

    Anybody want to guess who Kristy Robinson’s source is? She broke the Sanchez call up at 2:00 AM. Is it Neal?

    i think the kids have a slang term for calls at 2:00 AM.

    Funny how she “breaks news” when she doesn’t work for anyone.

  15. AJS says:

    But Pedro earned the nickname of Day-dro last year. Day games are typically when he goes off on a 4 for 4 with 2 homer afternoon.

  16. JAL says:

    He has not officially been called up. In NY in case they have to put Martin on the DL.

  17. JRay3 says:

    He has not been added to roster yet, just there in case.

  18. JAL says:

    Or perhaps better term would be has not been activated

  19. JohninOshkosh says:

    Got it. Thanks JAL and JRay.

  20. theplanisworking says:

    Congrats. Seriously.

    Us Hippos believe in staying as dumb as possible. Fewer expectations that way. ;)

    May you have success in your new position.

  21. They’d do well to sit him the rest of the series and keep him healthy.

  22. theplanisworking says:

    Who is Kristy Robinson?

  23. Did he ever get in a game?

  24. Foo was in love with her when he was here. She was with Pirate Prospects. Now, freelance, I think someone said.

  25. Milo Hamilton says:

    Blondie !

  26. Milo Hamilton says:

    Biertempfel says Sanchez just walked into the Pirates clubhouse & got a big hug from Grilli.

    Haven’t they learned their lesson ?

  27. theplanisworking says:

    Oh, PP girl? Dont read propoganda sheets.

    So how on earth does SHE get that info first???

  28. She’s from Lou Holtz and my hometown in Ohio. Pretty thing but not a very good writer.

  29. theplanisworking says:

    Would that make Foo her Dagwood??

  30. He’s not as tall as Grilli, so he probably got the neck-lock, too. I’ll bet Jordy Mercer could escape the Grilli sleeper hold because he’s tall.

  31. Foo has a beautiful wife, too, but he likes to read PP. So he was a fan. Might still be. He doesn’t hang out here anymore.

    He and Groaty have gone the way of the departed.


  32. Milo Hamilton says:

    She’s the queen of the selfie.

  33. Drew71 says:


  34. theplanisworking says:

    Thanks. I had no earthly idea who she was/is/looked like etc…..

    She is ok. Looks young….

    Anyway, I didnt know there were “free agents” in the Pittsburgh reporting scene.

  35. theplanisworking says:

    Well, you fellas (and ladies if they show up) will have to root the team on for me.

    Just received a phone call about the health of my aunt/uncle and have to continue to make wedding arrangements for my cousin when I return to the Motherland (Pittsburgh) the end of this month.

    Then off to napland for a bit.

    So, GO BUCS!! And GO PENS!!

  36. Thundercrack says:

    Congrats Day-Dave

  37. Thundercrack says:


    I think it is probably this new thing called ‘social media’. Probably a tweet. Because I believe Colin Dunlap also knew & reported this.

    Or maybe TS went old-school and sent a text message

  38. Playoffs by 2012 says:


    Max “wager” is 100 units on any single line.
    Play as few or as many lines as you’d like.
    As always, this is for fun and entertainment purposes.

    Total ERRORS COMMITTED by the Pirates in today’s game.
    Line is 1.5

    Good Luck!!

  39. Milo Hamilton says:

    Duke Welker has been sent down to make room for Liriano. Tony Sanchez can work out with the team today & a decision whether to activate him must be made by tomorrow morning. If not he must be optioned back to Indy.

    They’re worried about the possibility of a rainout today & having to play two tomorrow. They would need another catcher if Martin is still unavailable.

  40. Drew71 says:

    The People’s Pedro Pile Driver
    The Stone Cole Stunner
    The Flying d’Arnaud d’Elbow Drop
    The Legend Leg Drop
    The Figure Four Leg Locke
    (Can You Smell What The Locke Is Cookin’?!?)

    Ok. This is stoopid even for me.

  41. Hope he hasn’t rotted in the pen.

  42. Bob Hasis says:

    A couple of games recently seemed to arouse my curiosity as to whether Jordy Mercer can be a major league SS.

    His arm appears weaker than Barmes’ arm, and some of his throws reminded me of Ryan Zimmerman. UGH!

    Did anyone else notice what I think I saw?

  43. Very creative. What time this morning did you start drinking?


  44. Milo Hamilton says:

    Told you he wouldn’t be available til next week. :)

  45. JohninOshkosh says:

    This organization just doesn’t want its prospects to play in a major league ballpark, does it?

  46. JohninOshkosh says:

    Kristy called it a “source” so I took it not to be information from Mark Zukerberg’s toy.

    Or maybe Colin is Kristy’s “source.” :)

  47. Drew71 says:

    I dislike watching national TV feeds of Pirates games when Tabata is playing.

    National announcers proNOUNCE his name corRECTly (essentially) but with such I’m-proving-I-know-how-to-pronounce-it Over EMphasis that it makes me wanna pull an Elvis on my TELevision.

  48. Thundercrack says:

    Siri is her source.


  49. Drew71 says:

    Who says I stopped last night?

  50. JRay3 says:

    Does not have the strongest arm, very evident when he moves to his right at second and throws to first, also weak throw on what should have been DP ball last night.

    All the scouting reports on him are can make the routine plays but does not make many flashy plays, and that could be due to range and arm.

  51. Yeah, you did say that. It ain’t Tuesday yet, is it?

  52. Patrick(RI) says:

    Think we can duplicate yesterday w/o Jones (or even Pedro)? Should be a challenging afternoon. Perhaps Gabby can pull an “Overbay”(4 of 5,HR & 5 ribi yesterday).

  53. JohninOshkosh says:

    100 Under, Sir.

  54. Lad9 says:

    100 on the under please. Very proudly at my daughter’s college graduation today so will miss the game. Go Buccos!

  55. Patrick(RI) says:

    perhaps comparing the “Overbay” with Inge or Barmas would have been better.

  56. JohninOshkosh says:

    Estoy de acuerdo

  57. Bob Hasis says:

    Yes that play last night for sure on the DP, and when he must hurry a throw with “zip” after moving to his right (at second base) his throw looks bad

  58. Drew71 says:


  59. JRay3 says:

    Congrats to your daughter on the accomplishment.

  60. Jason81 says:

    100 on the UNDER today, please.

  61. JRay3 says:

    Good morning from the left coast. Great day for the Buccos to add to the modest win streak. Looking forward to watching Liriano in a Pirate uniform.

    100 on the UNDER

    Thanks Playoffs and Let’s Go Bucs.

  62. Frankie says:

    100 on the under please

  63. Jandy says:

    congrats, Dave, happy for you! :)

  64. Jandy says:

    which explains it all ;X

  65. Jandy says:

    LMAO I”m dyin’ here!

  66. Jandy says:

    Hopefully catch you later on the Pen’s thread, Hipposter. Have a good one!

  67. Jandy says:

    Congrats to Lad’s daughter and to him :)

  68. Jandy says:


  69. Jandy says:

    Rain today 100 on the over please, Playoffs, and thanks much!

  70. Jandy says:

    Guys, I have a party at my daughter’s and I must depart. I’ll pop in later on the Pen’s thread. Go Buccos!

  71. radio wave says:

    At playoffs: I will take 75 on the under for today’s wine.

  72. JRay3 says:

    Walker to continue rehab in Altoona today and tomorrow. Playing all seven innings in first game of DH today and two AB’s in secon game…source 24/7 twitter.

  73. JaxBuc says:


  74. JaxBuc says:


  75. JaxBuc says:

    100 wet towels on the UNDER, please

  76. Thundercrack says:

    Save some Mac salad for us!

  77. Jandy says:

    You remembered! <3

  78. cmat0829 says:

    100 under.

  79. Naje says:

    Alvarez is 2 for 21 vs. Lefty starters this year. Why put him in that situation when he’s just now starting to get some decent contact? Let’s let him get prepped for a real challenge tomorrow.

  80. cmat0829 says:

    I’m lighting candles and having thrice daily prayer sessions that when Neil is activated Monday to play against the “we owe them a beating” Brewers, that Ol’ Man McDonald is DFA’s and Mercer sticks with the big club. Mc was worth a flier, he is an old salt of a major league player and has a lot of respect in the league, but he just doesn’t have anything left in the tank.

  81. OZ says:

    100 under, thx!

  82. Milo Hamilton says:

    I think when I see my sister tomorrow, I’m going to have her put the Overbay ball on ebay and strike while the iron is hot. Overbay on ebay, has a ring to it. I’ll keep you all informed. I still bet it’ll get no bids. Root em home for me today, I’m getting dragged out. Probably won’t see much.

  83. JohninOshkosh says:

    Love seeing you bringing the humor, JAL!

  84. JD says:

    100 under please.

  85. JD says:

    Nice 1st inning for Liriano!

  86. pattonbb says:

    Very cool, Dave!

  87. Thundercrack says:

    I am suggesting that they tell Liriano not take the bat off of his shoulder

  88. Should have left it on there.

  89. I prefer cole slaw. Less carbs. :)

  90. Patrick(ri) says:

    Resisting the urge to complain about bunting to set up the end of our order (hooray for Barmas), I hope we don’t pull our usual response to not cashing in early.

  91. JRay3 says:

    Liriano has all three pitches working thru two, change, slider and fastball all with command. Four punch outs and just 24 pitches thrown.

    Marte belts out Bucs fourth hit of game. Time to rough up Niese early.

  92. Dom says:

    Go buccos

  93. Patrick(ri) says:

    Time for Cutch — seems to be about 1/2 inch out of his groove.

  94. JRay3 says:

    Cutch with bloop base hit for his 20th RBI of year and Bucs build on early lead, 2-0 good guys.

  95. Patrick(ri) says:

    Nobody but Tabata!

  96. JRay3 says:

    Jose Tabata heating up…two run HR to left center on ball crushed, now 5-8 this series, good to see him get going.

  97. Thundercrack says:


  98. Drew71 says:

    Never change this lineup. NEVER!

    Ok, you can change the pitcher every now and again

  99. Drew71 says:

    and, as the national announcers say,


  100. pattonbb says:

    the sun shines on a dog’s butt every once in a while.

    Seriously, I’m happy for him, but hope he’s gone in a couple months.

  101. Drew71 says:


  102. Drew71 says:

    That’s hard to do with ThunderCrack.


    Just not the same

  103. Thundercrack says:

    Right , because all of our pitchers are tired already

  104. Thundercrack says:

    Are you watching a Fox broadcast or from a NYC feed?

    If this is a national game I am surprised Root can broadcast it

  105. radio wave says:

    I know Liriano previously pitched in the AL for Twins, WSox. Did he ever play in NL? Is today his first MLB at bats? Sounds like he’s making pretty good contact.

    Mets radio crew is panicing. They know their team isn’t hitting, and besides losing yesterday, and now, they are bemoaning going to St. Louis next.

  106. Patrick(ri) says:

    A little early, but I consider this a very good first MLB start for Liriano. excellent if he can get out of this mini crisis.

  107. Thundercrack says:

    It looks like the Mets offense stinks.
    And Neise doesn’t look like he has great stuff either

  108. JRay3 says:

    Really have to like what Liriano is showing, lots of movement on his pitches, varies speeds very well.

    Line through four – 4 IP 2 H 0 R 2 BB 6 K and 61 pitches.

  109. JRay3 says:

    First NL team for Liriano….coming into today he was 2-17 lifetime as a hitter.

  110. Patrick(ri) says:

    And doing it with the back-up catcher and a geriatric 3rd baseman.

  111. JRay3 says:

    If he regains the form he has shown in past really gives this team a formidable Top 3 in the rotation.

  112. JRay3 says:

    Mercer blasts his 2nd HR since recall…NH better make the right move Monday, keep Jordy and DFA Jihnny Mac.

  113. Patrick(ri) says:

    Have notbseen much of Wright — impressive, all around. he and Byrd are the only impressive mets.

  114. JRay3 says:

    Just wait til you see Harvey tomorrow.

  115. Patrick(ri) says:

    +1, for sure.

  116. Patrick(ri) says:

    Meant this for your Mercer comment. He has earned a scholarship.

  117. Thundercrack says:

    Byrd doesn’t impress me much. Wright looks to be great again

  118. JRay3 says:

    Tabata belts one off top of wall to center…3rd RBI of day for Jose now 6-9 in the series. Pirates routing Mets 6-0.

  119. Patrick(ri) says:

    Tabata rules. I repeat a much earlier claim that this threesome = a terrific outfield.

  120. pattonbb says:

    Way to go Tabata!

    Drive that trade value up…..

  121. Thundercrack says:

    Just when I was going to nitpick that Inge has to make productive out there, The Fort & Barmes come through

  122. JRay3 says:

    Fort two RBI single, Barmes with his second hit and second RBi with single up the middle, five run inning as Bucs have ten hits thus far. 9-0 Buccos!

  123. radio wave says:

    everybody hits.

  124. Thundercrack says:

    I like Tabata and want him to remain a Bucco. But the Mets look like they could use some outfielders.

  125. Patrick(ri) says:

    Send them Snider.

  126. Thundercrack says:

    If you are going to sit Cutch, why not let him hit first?

    And we better not lose this lead.

  127. Keith says:

    Boo, run.

  128. radio wave says:

    A very nice start for Liriano. I hope there’s more in the tank.

  129. JRay3 says:

    Very nice debut for Liriano…5.1 IP 6 H 1 R 2 BB 9 K.

    Don’t know what Inge was thinking there trying to look up at runner heading to plate, your up 9 get the out.

  130. JRay3 says:

    With his 4th hit of game, 7th of series, Tabata now hitting .283 on the year.

  131. JRay3 says:

    With Inge single, every Pirate starter has a hit minus the pitcher.

  132. Bottom of the lineup is making up for all those other games that they didn’t come through. Nice to see. Nice to destroy the Mets.

  133. tdb1977 says:

    I really hope they don’t need to use Grilli and Melancon today.

  134. tdb1977 says:

    Lesson learned! Now, lets get after a Reds batter next time we play them.

  135. Thundercrack says:

    Obviously Bryan Morris was paying attention last night. Or a veteran talked to him.


  136. Ghost says:

    Except for John McDonald, the Pirates bench players have usually been rising to the occasion when Clint gets them some game time. Some may have wanted Pedro to be back out there today, but I think Clint is pushing just the right buttons. Pedro has had back-to-back days of success to savor. A single day off won’t kill his mojo if he’s truly getting back on track. More importantly, helping a player who had been flailing as much as Pedro has also can include knowing what situations are more optimal for that player, at what situations said player is not yet quite ready for.

  137. Patrick(ri) says:

    Morris may have just earned his scholarship, too.

  138. JRay3 says:

    Have to appreciate Morris delivering message as to not show up one of his teammates again.

  139. radio wave says:

    Mets radio predicted that hit batter. The guy “showboated” his homer yesterday. They said his teammates weren’t thrilled with his antics, either. You don’t do that when you’re losing.

  140. tdb1977 says:

    Those tickets are going to be pretty cheap this week with this promotion they are doing. How quickly will they be gone after this game? 15 minutes? 20 minutes?

  141. JaxBuc says:

    Holy Smokes!

    Just got back from coaching my daughters in their volleyball match and Liriano pitched 5.1 and had 9 K’s. AND, the horrible, inept, over-the-hill offense has put up 10 runs. Amazing.

  142. tdb1977 says:

    WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! What a bomb by Mercer!!

  143. JRay3 says:

    Jordy Mercer goes cannon ball for second time today….I think he has made his statement to stay up with the big club.

  144. Mercer with Bomb #2!!! 11-1 Buccos!

  145. Reading says:

    What is the big decision about when Walker comes back? Move Mercer to shortstop.

  146. Thundercrack says:

    Great games by Mercer and Liriano.

    Somewhere NH is smiling like a butcher’s dog.


  147. JRay3 says:

    Snider now in 1-17 rut, good thing Tabata is heating up and nice to have options.

  148. Went to clean the church and get back to an 11-1 game. 15 hits. Well-pitched, plunking of Valdespin. Great game all-around.

  149. JRay3 says:

    Liriano 9 K’s, Morris 3 K’s and Wilson comes in and fans first batter he faces as Pirates have struck out 13 Mets.

  150. tdb1977 says:

    Mercer has as many home runs as Barmes and Walker have combined. Just saying.

  151. Maybe the CL will rear it’s ugly head again. Does he have any in-grown toenails or anything?

  152. Patrick(ri) says:

    Suppose we pull off an upset tomorrow — the next 10 games are at home vs the Brewers, Astos and Cubs. An opportunity not to be missed!

  153. Patrick(ri) says:

    He has to be worried.

  154. JRay3 says:

    And hopefully a few Cardinals losses sprinkled in, they have been on fire of late.

  155. Patrick(ri) says:

    Ah, that explains it. Good deeds have their rewards.

  156. pattonbb says:

    Adam Wainwright is no-hitting the Rockies through 6

  157. tdb1977 says:

    That shot from the roof looks NASTY! Hope they can get through the 9th before that weather moves in.

  158. That’s right. (Angels singing in the background and in the outfield).

  159. Patrick(ri) says:

    The original helped make me a Pirate fan.

  160. That one was better than the re-make.

  161. Drew71 says:

    Rain delay ? This makes sense.

    Maybe the umps will blow another ruling and postpone this thing.

  162. JHadar says:

    Yes, but Barmes is over the Mendoza line now!

  163. Officer Mancuso says:

    This thing was a tour de force. I’m mega impressed by Liriano’s outing. In my experience it’s extremely rare for a first MLB start after DL to be anything other than one of 2 or 3 fiascoes that must be endured in order to get the man back to top form. NH for President! I can quit watching now, a World Series sweep is in the bag.

    Too bad Burnett can’t borrow a few of those 11 runs, he’d be the first pitcher to win 20 games by May 11th.

  164. Ghost says:


  165. Ghost says:

    It’s Raining Men! Hallelujah! – It’s Raining Men!

    (For you, Drew. Since you like songs popular with the trans crowd.)

  166. Milo Hamilton says:

    I owe you a drink !

  167. Raise it, and those $5 tickets for Mon-Fri in the outfield box and lower outfield box seats!!

  168. Drew71 says:

    I do, I do!

    It’s Divine

  169. JRay3 says:

    Behind a season best 16 hits and the impressive debut of Francisco Liriano and 16 Ks by all Bucs pitchers, the Pirates take the third game of the four game set by sinking the Mets 11-2 and there was noooooooooo doubt about it.

    With the win the Pirates are four games above .500 at 20-16, 5-4 in May and will look to take their third series over a NL East foe tomorrow afternoon when Jeanmar Gomez makes his second start of the year.

    Let’s Go Bucs!

  170. Thundercrack says:

    Thanks for reminding me Milo!

    See…if we win the division we can point to the game where the Pirate pitcher hit the batter when he was supposed to.

    ( OK, I’ll settle for looking back at the end of the +.500 season)

  171. tdb1977 says:

    How long will it last?

  172. Keith says:

    Interesting stats: Bucs pitching staff leads league in walks issued; also have lowest BA against (by a good margin). Folks aren’t hittin’ ‘em, and they’re not seein’ too many hittable pitches, either. Good news all around, I say.

  173. Good stats. And that translates to 20-16, which isn’t that shabby right at this point.

    Glad to see they finished the game so quickly. I thought Neverett was gonna have a cow on the radio side when he saw the weather moving in. He didn’t want a delay in the ninth. Must have tickets to a Broadway show or something.

  174. Drew71 says:

    Not completely good. When batting average for balls in play is low, there’s an element of luck…batted balls finding gloves rather than holes.

    Not to say it is likely to reverse. Just saying that stat is likely regress to the mean, even out a bit.

  175. I hope they keep finding gloves. This team needs to progress to the mean after the last 20 seasons.

  176. John Lease says:

    Until he signs his contract extension and Mercer is dealt for prospects with years of control?

  177. JRay3 says:

    A big help is having three pitchers with strong K/9 rates and swing and miss stuff…AJ, Wandy, and Liriano reduce balls in play quite a bit.

  178. Ermine says:

    Is James Mac toast now..If Liriano is legit, with Locke pitching well, along with Gomez..Morton and Karstens in the wings and Cole getting Primed in Indy.

  179. JHadar says:

    He’s a bit of an enigma, but if he’s on the DL now they probably need to see what they have when he’s healthy again and start thinking about trading some excess pitching to fill holes on the offense and/or seeing who can move into relief. You can never have too much pitching and when you do you need to use wisdom in cutting back the excess.

    If Mercer is a viable long-term option at shortstop and Pedro can finally do what he hasn’t been able to do that we all hoped he could do and Martin can keep the average up while hitting for power — a lot of ifs, that would be the best-case scenario. We’d actually have major leaguers at every position and a pretty good bench — and a few trading pieces. If only the prospect of trading (not even to mention trading for prospects) wasn’t such a frustrating thing to consider. But we’ve had that discussion before.

    I like Joe Brown’s overall work, but trading away Groat and Hoak and counting on guys like Bob Bailey to fill the holes;well things were never quite the same after that. Alley and Wills sort of got things stabilized, but when you think of what might have been if Rickey had lived…

  180. Thundercrack says:

    Paul Maholm is back to Earth. His record is 4-4

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