March 14, 2007

Pre-Game Notes

TODAY:
The Pirates meet the Red Sox at Fort Myers for a 1:05 game. The scheduled starters are Zach Duke against Boston’s Kasas (insert You are not in ... anymore joke here) Gabbard (LH). Other pitchers scheduled for innings are Ian Snell, Kevin Gryboski, Matt Capps, Juan Perez and Josh Sharpless.
EDITORS NOTE: We are now getting to the point in spring that there may not be enough innings for all pitchers scheduled.

YESTERDAY:
The Pirates had their one day off this spring, on Monday they beat the Indians 6-1.

ZACH DUKE:
The 23-year-old lefthander is making his fourth start of the spring. He is 0-1 with a 4.00 ERA in three starts this spring. Last outing Duke suffered a loss vs. Braves allowing 1 earned run over four innings pitched with 5 strikeouts. Duke looks to have regained his strikeout touch averaging over a strikeout an inning this spring. Against the Blue Jays he went 3 IP with 3 K's and 2 IP with 2K's against the Reds.

TOMORROW:
The Pirates are playing a day/night split squad doubleheader against the Reds. The clubs will play in Bradenton at 1:05 and in Sarasota at 7:05. In the first game the starters are Paul Maholm against Cincinnati’s Kirk Saarloos (RHP). The second game starters are Shawn Chacon against Cincinnati’s Bobby Livingston (LH).

THE ROSTER:
There are currently 48 players in major league camp, 18 are non-roster invitees.

ANOTHER LEFTY:
The Pirates are facing a left-handed starter for the fourth game in a row and for the sixth time in their last seven games.

THE HIT PARADE:
The Pirates have 10 or more hits in each of their last nine games. They enter today’s game batting .302 as a team, which ranks second in the Grapefruit League (the Reds lead with a .305 average).

SLIDE NOTES:
  • Jason Bay has five hits in his last seven at bats.
  • Brian Bixler has hit safely in four straight games and has reached base safely in all eight games played.
  • Jose Castillo has played four games at third base and one at second base (split squad).
  • Ryan Doumit has reached base safely in each of his last four plate appearances (two hits, awalk and a HBP).
  • Brad Eldred homered four times in his first 12 plate appearances, he is 11 for 25 (.440) in 10 games this spring.
  • Jose Hernandez has four hits in his last six at bats.
  • Adam LaRoche has four hits in his last 10 at bats.
  • Ronny Paulino has homered twice in his last seven at bats and has seven hits in hislast 11 plate appearances.
  • Neil Walker has reached base safely five times in his last seven plate appearances.
  • Ian Snell pitched 3 perfect innings of relief in his last outing.
  • Juan Perez has made three scoreless appearances this spring, 2.2 innings pitched.
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