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On location: Phillies 6, Pirates 4

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media

Looking ahead to first pitch …

Game: Pirates (52-31) vs. Philadelphia Phillies (40-45)

Starters: RHP Gerrit Cole vs. LHP Cole Hamels

Time: 1:35 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, LF
  2. Jose Tabata, RF
  3. Andrew McCutchen, CF
  4. Gaby Sanchez, 1B
  5. Russell Martin, C
  6. Pedro Alvarez, 3B
  7. Neil Walker, 2B
  8. Clint Barmes, SS
  9. Cole, P

Here’s TribLIVE’s Pirates page. Rob Biertempfel and I are 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 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.


  1. Shocking… Mercer makes an error… Barmes in lineup today.


  2. Now, Tabata’s batting second.

  3. Happy Fourth everybody.

    Well Bob Hasis called it last night, Barmes gets the start at SS. Encouraging to see Walker get three hits of lefties the past two games.

    I know many here are down on Tabata, but he was hitting before injury and I like the fact he is going to be run out there everyday to see if he can be a solution or bring something to this mix.

    Just have to wonder when Alvarez is going to move up in the order, his power and run production numbers have got to give him consideration for the 4-5 hole.

    Time to take another series, go Bucs!

    • I mentioned yesterday the interview with Hurdle talking about Walker and lefties. He said he and Walker had had a lot of sit downs on that recently. He mentioned that Walker had been good against lefties batting right handed in 2010, so it was something Walker was kind of holding onto, but he also mentioned that Walker was down each year against lefties since then, and over 100 points of batting average from 2010 this year. I guess the main thing was it’s something they are aware of and working on, including Neil. He gets it.

    • The error was the straw, but as noted above 0-5 last night and being moved (indiscriminately to 8th) was just enough for CH to get his boy back in there.

      The at bat in the 1st game when he K’d with the bases loaded late in the game was also a factor.

      I am in somewhat of an agreement with this – I just wish CH would handle Barmes in the same way – instead of continually force-feeding us.

      We’ll see

  4. Clint Barmes is a career .500 hitter against Cole Hamels.
    He has 2 doubles, and even 1 HR against him.
    Barmes has a 1.125 Slugging Pct and a 1.625 OPS lifetime against Hamels.

    Maybe all Clint Hurdle did was look at the print out??

  5. Happy to see Tabata in the 2 hole. Now he has to prove he deserves it. #1, #2, #3 could be quite the ‘scamperers’ if they get to running.

    Johnnie Ray III, Pedro HAS been batting #5 the last few games. #6 today against lefty.

    Hope Pedro hits the lefty and Neil hits righthanded. Otherwise #6, #7, #8, #9 will be a black hole in the line-up. Even Cole Hamels in his terrible year looks like he can handle those 4. Come on, Neil and suddenly “a little dependable against lefties Pedro!”

    • I know Pedro has been placed in five hole, his three run HR last night that changed game was off a LHP, I just think his numbers have both proven and shown he deserves to be like Cutch- find his spot in lineup and leave him alone.

      You are correct in Hamels so on the surface you would like to believe success is to be had today.


    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 Combined HITS + WALKS + HBP by Jose Tabata + Clint Barmes in today’s game
    Line is 3.5

    Line #2
    Total ATTENDANCE for today’s game at PNC Park
    Line is 37,200.5

    Please Note – All games must be considered official games in order for line(s) to be valid. Any postponement, cancellation, or suspension of game(s) will void line(s).

    GOOD LUCK!!!

  7. Line 1 – 100 on the under

    Line 2 – 50 on the over

  8. I just read that Ryan Roberts was optioned to AAA by Tampa, once again.

    Here is a guy who i would prefer way over Inge.

    He is a switch hitter, has a little pop, can GET ON BASE, can run a little bit, and can play multiple positions.

    NH should take a flyer on this guy, cut INGE, and give this guy the 25th man role off the bench.

    Maybe the team can catch lightning in a bottle, just like with Drew Sutton last season.
    Inge can be put on waivers, obviously no team in their right mind would claim him.
    Ship him to AAA then, and only recall him in case of dire emergency.
    Inge’s next Ab in a Pirate uniform should be as a september callup

    Sitting on the bench, with cat -eye contacts, is a disgrace to the game.
    What type of veteran leadership is he really displaying?
    Stuff like that should be saved for the clubhouse, not the dugout.

    • He has too many tattoos.
      We already have our allotted quota of ink on this squad.
      Selig will fine us if we add any more.

  9. I can’t wait to watch .204 hitting Clint Barmes because Mercer made 4 errors.

  10. I am still a fan of Jose Tabata. But this is it.

    And I don’t think he looked so great in the outfield last night.

  11. I must have forgotten about Barmes’ start on June 30… those 2 starts for Mercer must have really been pretty hard on him mentally and physically.

    • I believe Barmes also had an error in that last start.

    • Or maybe you didn’t take the time to notice Barmes has great career numbers against Hamels.

      Have to find AB’s for your bench guys, it means Fort will get his start a week, it means you find the occasional spot to play Inge (Seattle and a three run HR to boot), platoons in RF and 1B get the other bench guys in regularly. And it means Barmes will play some, today the numbers support is as good a day as any.

      Not that difficult, really it isn’t.

      • But it’s not as much fun, apparently, as criticizing for no rational reason. :-)

        • Some just look at sunny days and will find fault the breeze isn’t just right.

          I say embrace the moment, enjoy the ride and those that can’t their loss.

      • Past performance is not an indicator of future performance, and people can and do lose money- or so the disclaimer goes.

        • No it does not, but there is an old adage that says history repeats itself.

          Just like past performance of Hamels this year does not preclude him from throwing a no hitter today, but past performance does indicate that is highly unlikely.

          Each day is a new day, this could be Barmes day or maybe it turns out it will not be, but why blast a manager about his move especially when said manager has pulled a majority of the right strings this year….52-31 seems to have a good plus of the situation.

          • Pulled the right strings is correct. Including switching to mercer at the appropriate time and sticking with him. Playing Barmes once a week is hardly a horrible thing. Especially with a rookie pitcher going on the mound for us. Cole doesn’t need any innings where he is forced to get 4 outs.

          • Who’s blasting the manager. Fourth of July. Big sellout crowd. Lots of excitement and electricity in the air. The new starting shortstop should be on the field.

          • You know very well 1/3 of the games will be lost, and 1/3 will be won. It’s the final 1/3 where managers worth their salt will be able to strategically win.

            Pinch-hitting Inge for Jones – who had homered in his previous at bat wouldn’t be one of CH’s award winning moves. Inge K’d remember

            • Any suggestions for a manager who would have this team better than 52-31? Last I heard that was the best record in baseball. It’s increasingly amazing how they are doing that despite Clint’s alleged incompetence.

  12. Wandy received a platelet-rich plasma injection.

    When I looked this up it seems a lot like what those cyclists in the Tour de France did – and got in trouble for. (Lance)

    Does anyone know if this is different than what happened to them. I also thought the cyclists did some kind of blood transfusion / cleaning.

    (what made me think of this and look it up was a comment from a radio personality yesterday)

  13. I heard Barmes was growing a beard until CH decided to insert back into the starting line-up.
    Look for a clean shaven SS today

  14. 100 on the under for line 1 and over for line 2

  15. 100 over on both please.

  16. Martin continues to show he was/is the #1 upgrade in the offseason!!

  17. Russell Martin easily gets Rollins, 16th runner he has nabbed this year, he single handedly gets Cole out of the inning.

  18. How about that a hustle double for Tabata…time for the middle of lineup to get him in.

  19. Good hustle by Tabby on the double.

  20. Fourth of July wouldnt be the same without this dreck………..

  21. Barmes going yard here would really be good.

  22. It’s just like he’s never been gone he hasn’t lost that graceful long flowing swing and a miss

  23. Pretty good hustle by Cole on that swinging bunt that went foul. Easily would have beaten it out.

  24. Cutch with a clutch single!!!

    2-0 good guys!

  25. Nice to see clutch from Cutch.

  26. Great at bat by Cutch. Fought off a couple nasty pitches before going back up the gut.

  27. Two years ago Rollins easily makes the play on Cutch’s single up the middle.

    It looks like he has lost a lot of range.

  28. How about Tabby 3-6 in his return to lineup and now hitting .287 on year. Cutch with 44 RBI’s after the big two out run producing hit.

  29. Cole just attacking hitters, 12 of 15 batters first pitch strikes, just 44 pitches thru 4 innings of work, 4 K’s and no free passes. He basically is saying he believes his stuff is better than the opposition bats.

  30. That black hole in Bucs’ line-up that is #6, #7, #8, #9 could make Hamels get better in a hurry.

    Thankfully the ‘scamperers’ in # 1, #2, #3 come through with their legs and bats to get Pirates a 2 – 0 lead.

  31. Pedro will have his hands full with Hamels. Listening to the Philly broadcast–real nice to hear professionals at work instead of the babbling, PR Department Pirate announcers. Blass and Walk NEVER SHUT UP.

  32. What an awful arm.

  33. Throws from the outfield!!


  34. Cole sitting comfortably at 95-96 than shows he can ratchet it up as he goes 100 on Utley who fouls it off but Cole than gets him out in front on 88 slider that ends up as soft ground out.

  35. According to Elias, The last time the Red Sox and Pirates had the best records in their leagues on July 4th, was 1903.

  36. Philly announcers say Locke, Melancon and Grilli need to be on All Star team.

  37. Does anyone know who the home plate umpire is?? He is worse than Meals. Of course, it is his crew.

  38. Don’t like the decision to pull Cole. He was throwing strikes. Ump was squeezing him.

    And just like that, the game is tied.

  39. The flair is in front of Tabata. He’s got to take charge…and run hard for it

  40. So much for the five perfect innings of relief the other day

  41. Can we get him out of here now?

  42. Well CH, what’s your next great move?

    • To buy a crystal ball?

      • My question was serious about just what CH would do now that he took his “strength” out of the game meaning his starting pitcher, thrust the outcome of the game into the hands of his “soon to be overworked” bullpen, and never giving Cole a chance to win – or lose – his own game.

        AS mentioned elsewhere, one of those games a manager can take full responsibility or credit for the outcome.

        Crystal ball is far less than anecdotal.

  43. AS I said above, 1/3 of the games are decided by strategy and managerial decisions – this appears to be one of them

  44. Clint the fielder!!!!!

  45. How come I never hear Walk say that the Pirates are scoring with a bunch of bloops and well placed hits?

    • Ruiz’s hit was no bloop.

    • Because they are the most disgusting, one way announcers in baseball. The Pirates didn’t exactly murder the ball when we scored and we are in real trouble now against Hamels.

  46. I see a key Inge PH appearance in our future.

  47. 2-11 record? No problem. Double digit Ks easily obtainable against Bucs.

  48. This game is disappointing to say the least. Phils look like the playoff team this series.

  49. Phillies players don’t seem to try too hard to get out of the way of inside pitches.

  50. Imagine a pinch hitter actually driving the ball to the outfield deep enough to get in a run. Then imagine swinging at a low and outside garbage pitch for strike three. Disgruntled.

  51. No complaint about the move, as it worked, but doesn’t pinch-hitting for Tabata sort of fly in the face of giving him opportunity to show what he can do. Also, consider that two straight right handers hit the righty. .???

  52. Utley is showing teams that he still has something in the tank

    Could be interesting for him at the trade deadline

  53. Love this excerpt from Delmon Young’s contract:

    may earn additional $0.6M in bonuses based on six weigh-ins during season ($0.1M each for weighing 230 pounds or less at first three weigh-ins and $0.1M each for weighing 235 pounds or less at last three weigh-ins)

  54. Off topic but guess we will never know how the Morrow for Morrow trade worked out….

    Joe Morrow part of a 7 player deal between Dallas and Boston. Seguin going to Dallas with Erikkson going to Boston. So not only did Brendan not choose boston but the bruins end up getting the player the Pens had to give up to get him! Irony!

  55. Lower that Jolly Hippo.

    These types of games happen. Guess this is one of the “54″.

    Bucs going to Wrigley for the weekend. Cubs seem to be a good tonic for a loss. :)

  56. Was really hoping for extra innings.

    I wanted to see a Bucco victory….and wanted to delay getting out there to cut the grass

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