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Final: Pirates 4, Cubs 2

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media

Looking ahead to first pitch …

Game: Pirates (28-18) vs. Chicago Cubs (18-27)

Starters: RHP Jeanmar Gomez vs. RHP Edwin Jackson

Time: 12:35 p.m.

Site: PNC Park

TV, radio: Root Sports, 93.7 The Fan

Here’s the official live box score.

Here’s the Pirates’ lineup …

  1. Starling Marte, CF
  2. Travis Snider, LF
  3. Andrew McCutchen, CF
  4. Garrett Jones, 1B
  5. Neil Walker, 2B
  6. Michael McKenry, C
  7. Pedro Alvarez, 3B
  8. Clint Barmes, SS
  9. Gomez, RHP

Here’s TribLIVE’s Pirates page. Rob Biertempfel is covering.

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 more, including 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 top four columnists in the country -- highest circulation category -- by the AP Sports Editors. For 2012, he was named one of the top three columnists in the country by the National Headliners Awards. For 2013, he was named top columnist in the state by the Keystone Awards and second-place by the Pennsylvania AP Managing Editors.

187 Comments

  1. Let’s break out the broomsticks!

  2. TWO-LINE THURSDAY

    Max “wager” is 100 units on any single line.
    All “wagers” must be in multiples of 5 units.
    Play as few or as many lines as you’d like.
    As always, this is for fun and entertainment purposes.

    Line #1
    Total PITCHERS USED by the Pirates in today’s game
    Line is 4.5

    Line #2
    Total HOME RUNS HIT by the Pirates in today’s game
    Line is 1.5

    Good Luck!!

    • Mr Playoffs…….

      I will take 100 Hoka Hippos on the UNDER for line 1.

      Thanks!

    • Please give a 100 on the over on both

    • Line 1: 100 Under

      Line 2: 100 Over

    • Playoffs,

      100 on the UNDER for Line 1

      100 on the OVER for line 2

      Thanks!

    • Playoffs,
      UNDER for 100 units on both lines. Thanks.

    • Hmmm…good lines as always… let’s go 100 EACH.. UNDER on line 1 and OVER on line 2.

      I think with Melancon probably unavailable and Grilli possibly unavailable, we will see multiple innings out of someone like Wilson or Morris…. if Gomez can go 5+, then I can see Mazarro or Morris bridge to the 8th, Wilson gets the 8th and Watson for the save if needed. But that’s reading way too much into this!!..

    • Good morning from Vegas, the trade show capital it feels like. Good day for sweep. Not much time but want to sneak in here.

      Line 1 – 25 on the OVER

      Line 2 – 75 on the UNDER

      Thanks and Let’s Go Bucs.

    • Thanks Playoffs

      100 on Under for line 1
      100 on Over for line 2

    • 100 under line 1.
      100 over line 2.

      Thanks. Go Bucs!

    • I’ll take the over on line 1 and the under on line 2. Hopefully they will get this game in – but its pouring at my office in Corapolis. Sky just opened up.

    • 50 and under on both lines. Thanks.

    • At playoffs: just under the wire with this. I will take 50 for the under on the first line. I will take 50 on the over for the second line. Thank you

    • Please sir, may have have 50 Jenny Jenny’s on the UNDER for line 1,
      and 100 on the OVER for line 2?

      We’re breakin’ out the lumber today! Daydro, The Legend, and Cutch or McKenry are all leaving the yard today!

    • 100 on the under line 1 and 100 on the over line 2
      Thanks Playoffs :)

  3. Biz… I know your tag line in recent years has been hope but expect… just wondering if you’re at the point with this year’s team that you’re approaching more/most/every game expecting them to win…?

    • Lets say cautiously optimistic for now.

      A long way to go and I am worried about them burning the end of the bullpen out. Was a bit surprised they used Melacon to close yesterday.

      He and Grilli have, IMO, made the difference so far

      • Yeah, the bullpen would be a spot where I’d look to add an arm or two, but the way they’ve handled Hughes, Morris, Black, etc, has been encouraging. They’re looking to use not only the 7 guys in the ‘pen with the big league club, but also three or four guys from the minors to help.

        As for Grilli yesterday, no way he was going to pitch after that 34 pitch 9th on Tuesday… a little surprised to see Melancon there, but not much. He’s probably got the day off today. Would love to see a Morris or Wilson or Contreras finish off a three or four run lead (or more) in the 9th today…

        • I’d take Wilson out of that triumvirate. He’s been tough when he has his control.

          The other 2 would be OK, too.

          • My guess yesterday was that Melancon would close. After the day off yesterday (i.e. not pitching), my guess is that Grilli is available to close in a one run game. Two run lead or more and someone else other than Grilli or Melancon gets a chance to close. I’m probably over-thinking it, but we will see.

            • Nah, not over-thinking it at all… sounds just about right. The coaching staff and bullpen go through these scenarios every day… and barring anything crazy happening, each guy in the pen knows his role for that day: long man/swing man, 7th inning, 8th inning, closer… think you just about nailed today’s scenarios, tom.

        • I think a couple three bullpen spots get filled when Morton, Karstens, and maybe Cole come up with long relievers either from the guys coming up or with Gomez and Locke.

          Having some guys who can handle longer stints takes pressure off the set-up guys.

          However it works out, I feel safe in predicting lots of shuffling ahead.

    • Ever since 1957 I have always expected them to win every game — sometimes those expectations were disappointed in the first few innings — but game by game, baseball being baseball, there’s always been a chance.

  4. Does anyone else have a bad feeling that Jeanmar is overdue for a bad outing? Or is it just me? I love what he’s done so far, but the PBC is cruising along and this seems like a perfect spot where we’d expect the sweep, but things don’t go our way. Hope I’m wrong!!!

  5. I’ll take 100 each on the unders for both lines today.

  6. how do you add an icon?

  7. It’s for sale lol

  8. helps if I spell it correctly..by bad :/

  9. 1-0 early..I’ll take it

  10. make that 2-0 :)

  11. Wow, these guys are jumping on it in the first…

  12. Now if Daydro shows up, the rout is on.

  13. Well, out for exciting stuff.

    Fitting we are playing the Cubs……………. Buc spelled backward is Cub.

    Go BUCS!

    Sweep em!!

    Hippo out.

  14. Nearly 30 pitches thrown by Jackson.

  15. Boy, Alvarez can mash on occasion but he still doesn’t get an A for Approach yet, does he? Got Jackson on the ropes and he swings at the first two balls in the dirt he sees!

  16. Looks like my gut was wrong. We have Liriano, Jr. on the mound today. 21 pitches to get through the first 2 innings. I love it

    • oops 19 pitches, even better

    • If he keeps this up,how do you remove him from the rotation?

      • You dont. You leave the rotation as is and you have arms ready for when and if things start to fall apart.

      • I happened to hear Hurdle’s radio show today & he made it sound like a done deal that Morton will take Jeanmar’s spot after 2 more rehab starts.

        • Did he give a reason? Not going deep enough into games maybe?

          • He said Charlie is a starter & only a starter & they would look for Jeanmar’s “next opportunity”. I didn’t read into his comments that Gomez would be sent down. Just back to the bullpen.

        • And Morton should replace him. Of Jeanmar’s 4 starts, he didn’t pitch well against Milwaukee and the Astros and his other two starts which were good were against the Mets and Mariners. As a reliever I think he was pretty good. Small sample sizes though.

          • Agree . . . it’s standard baseball thinking, the vet vs the new guy. Still what to do with a No. 5 starter with a 2.60 (End of 2nd Inning) ERA is a nice problem to have.

            I hope Gomez has made the team and will continue in long relief though.

          • True enough, though I’d quibble the MIL start wasn’t bad. The D elevated his pitch count so he only went 4 innings, but also only gave up 2 ERs. But to take it a step further, Charlie was bad in 4 of his last 6 outings. Oh, and they were a year ago. This isn’t Nolan Ryan we’re talking about. His career ERA is north of 5.00 He had one decent year (3.83 ERA) and the rest is pretty bad.

            Plus, how to put this, he’s a little delicate mentally. Why mess up a good thing for something so unreliable. Frankly, I’d rather see Karstens inthe rotation than Charlie, but for Chrissake, leave Gomez in there until he gives you a reason to take him out.

      • Pirates Prospects said the same thing about Morton automatically going into the rotation, and I thought that was strange. Seriously, if Jeanmar has a 2.50 ERA after 7 starts, and he’s built himself up to 6 or 7 innings an outing, no way you can take him out. I can’t believe I just typed that sentence.

      • Well, he’s still not giving them enough innings to stay in the rotation long term. I think you need to average 6. He usually goes 5. I’m not complaining, because he has been better than advertised exactly at a time when we really needed him. But, Morton and Karstens might be better options at some point.

  17. Can anyone get Steve Blass and Gregg Brown to quit babbling?? They are so annoying.

  18. And, what the hell is a trip, trip, triple?? Brown thinks he is the new version of Chris Berman???

  19. And Snider comes thru with a triple :)

  20. Snider is starting to look comfortable. That was a shot. Cutch making it 4-0. Gotta love this.

  21. A couple of crooked numbers on the board, could be a fun afternoon.

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  23. Gomez shuts them down again..In what 32 pitches. Who would have guessed, back in April.

  24. Starting Pitchers ERA

    Burnett 2.57
    Locke 2.73
    Rodriguez 3.40
    Liriano 1.00
    Gomez 2.55*

    In game third inning.

    Impressive.

    And not only do we have to find places for Morton and Karstens, but can McDonald even make the team, let alone the rotation when he’s healthy again?

  25. Gomez with half the pitches thrown than Jackson.

    (I was never into the hype about Jackson)

  26. Time to see if Gomez can do the Liriano/Houdini act from last night. 1st and 3rd, nobody out, heart of the order up

  27. Can’t give any team four outs..I hope it doesn’t come back to haunt.

  28. Two games in a row we don’t get an out because the 1st baseman doesn’t stay put.

  29. I think it will rain

  30. Crap, game delayed, there might go the under for number of pitchers for the PBC

  31. go Pirates!

  32. Fellas, I just watched my traditional Rick Dempsey rain delay slide on the early ’80s tarp in Baltimore. Now on to that LONG DELAY nap!

  33. How long is the rain out there supposed to last. Sunny and 65 on the prairie.

  34. I guess Gomez is done. Who do you all think they’ll bring in to pitch.

  35. Any word on when the game might resume? Its been dry in Shippingport for about an hour

  36. Rob King’s Rain Delay Theater.

  37. The problem with all this is that the umpires have a plane to catch and they don’t care what the score is.

  38. Steelers signed Wheaton.

  39. Game should resume at 3:45.. The tarp is off

  40. Tarp is coming off the field. Scheduled to resume at 3:45.

  41. Thanks to both of you for letting us know that.

    Hey, I’ll be home in time to catch the end of the game ;-)

  42. When did we get Brooks Robinson ?

  43. Should have switched Mercer in at 3B in 9th spot in lineup and Mazzaro in 7th spot. At most Maz would have only batted 1 time, unless PBC put up 10 runs or so.

  44. So this thing got kicked back on?? MLB Gamecast on “that” network is soooo bad

    10 games above .500 ain’t too shabby…let’s get #11

    • So, we’ll get this one in. That’s good, since we have a 4-1 lead. But, we already had a 4-2 lead wiped out vs. the Cards earlier. Does it bother anyone else that MLB has this antiquated rule that you need to start a game over at the beginning that could be half over because it started raining? I’ve never understood the reasoning, nor have I heard anyone explain why they do it. Why not just start the game from where you left off, as though it was suspended for another reason. All the stats get wiped out. One team usually gets screwed needlessly. Wouldn’t the fair thing be to start that Cards game over with the Bucs leading by the 4-2 score they earned? Maybe the stupidest rule in sports – unless there is a logical reason I have not thought of.

  45. Our 2nd baseman is having some serious issues right now.

  46. Listening to ROOT TV broadcast. Saying that NH should be executive of the year. Really?

    • Compare him to others thus far this year. Seriously. Of course the collapse still has to happen, but if it does not…who is his comparables?

      Season ended right now, why not?

      Liriano signing, Maclenon (can’t ever spell his name) trade. Jeff Locke success…..

  47. Greg Brown! Things are going well, OK, but let’s dispatch with the Neil Huntington, Executive Of The Year talk! Gah!

  48. Hey, not for nothing, but when did we start this Morning Java thing? Where’s Wakeup Call? CHANGE IS SCARY

  49. I dont know if this AB is still going on or not, but Pedro is wearing this dude out

  50. Time for a Marte Partay

  51. I think the Under 4.5 Pirates pitchers is a loser. Doubt they leave Contreras in for more than 1 inning.

  52. Thank you Culth. that ball looked like trouble. Nice catch

  53. All three of McCutchen’s hits have come on the 1st pitch.

  54. Time for Marmol to blow up……..

  55. They are playing with fire just waiting around like this.

  56. Why is Walker so below average this year. I asked last night — the back? The hand injury? (i like walker and hope for the best, but don’t see much).

    • Looking back, I see Milo already dealt with this. Late comers should read the blog before blathering.

      • Maybe he should bunt more often ?

      • Somehow I can’t find Milo’s post.

        I feel like it has to be the injuries. Walker has absolutely zero power this year. None.

        He’s still making good contact, actually improving his plate discipline, but he just cannot hit the ball with any authority.

  57. Behind a league leading 19th save from Jason Grilli and the efforts of the collective Bucs staff covering 5.1 innings due to the rain delay the Pirates sweep the Cubs with a 4-2 win and there was noooooooooo doubt about it.

    With the win the Bucs are now a season best 11 above .500 at 29-18, tied for top WC spot and 1.5 games back of St Louis. The win closes out the 10 game home stand with an 8-2 mark and the Pirates are 14-6 in May. The teams best start since 1991. The Bucs take to the road tomorrow night to start a three game set with Milwaukee with AJ Burnett getting the call in the opener.

    Let’s Go Bucs!

  58. That’s an 8-2 homestand good people. Good teams have 8-2 homestands.

    • It’s kind of fun expecting to win :)

    • Next 13 games: 3 at Milw, 2 at Det, 2 home v Det, 3 home v Cincy and 3 at Atlanta. They go 6-7, I’ll take it… would love 7-6 and a potential 36-24 record after 60 games.

      Just keep grinding out wins…series wins… plus numbers every 10 games. I’ll take it.

    • Now if only they could stop winning so they can save the back end of their bullpen from pitching so darn much.

      • Did you leave out a word there, NMR? lol…

        I like the way they’re handling the bullpen… it’s not just the seven arms on the big league club, it’s the four for five more arms in the minors they’re working into the mix, too. Plus Karstens or Jeanmar, whoever gets the long relief role if/when Morton returns. And you’d have to think that they’d keep looking to bolster the back end of the pen somehow.

        Good, solid team… getting more confident with each series win. And that’s without much contribution from Alvarez and Walker (and Cutch, to a degree, as well).

        • It was meant to be sarcastic. Poking a bit of fun at the fans who are worried about Grilli/Melancon getting overworked.

          We don’t know what to do when our closer/setup man combo actually is in a position to pitch enough to worry about being overworked.

          Baltimore won over 90 games last year, including the most 1-run games in baseball and Jim Johnson only pitched 68 innings over 71 appearances notching 51 saves. The rest of the relievers accounted for just four.

          Projecting Grilli/Melancon innings as a straight fraction of the season is incorrect.

  59. I really like the fact that Gomez and Locke are pitching so well that we’ve all forgotten that Gerrit Cole could come up in June. AND, it’s almost #electricstuff time…AND! Karstens face!

    JMac’s still on the DL? When does he get back?

  60. Cutch starting to heat up. If Pedro ever gets it going, this could be a fun summer.

  61. Was out for the afternoon, saw we won.

    Now to tackle the House of Horrors……….. and with the momentum we have, I feel good about going there for a change.

    Raise the Jolly Hippo !!!

  62. Crap.

    I signed on after a looooong day and was looking forward to complaining about something.

    NOW what do I do?

  63. WHOOP!! Keep it going, Buccos!

    And a Happy Memorial Day Weekend (our busiest and most fantastic of the year – every year since 1981) to all!

  64. This team is well on their way to having over 30 wins by end of May, that’s impressive for a team that I didn’t think had a chance in (you know what) to do just that.

  65. This team is well on their way to having over 30 wins by end of May, that’s impressive for a team that I didn’t think had a chance in (you know what) to do just that.

  66. Only 3 goalies in history have choked away a 3-0 series lead and Tukka Rask is one of them.

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