April 13, 2007

Pre-Game Notes

APRIL 13, 2007 AT PNC PARK --- GAME #10, HOME #4
RHP RUSS ORTIZ (0-1, 5.40 ERA) vs. LHP ZACH DUKE (1-0, 3.46 ERA)

Tonight marks the debut of the Pirates new red, sleeveless jerseys.

The 23-year-old lefthander (turns 24 on April 19) is making his third start of the 2007 season tonight.

Zach snapped his personal 10-game road losing streak with a 6-3 win over Eric Milton in Cincinnati last Sunday...He tossed 6.0 scoreless frames and had a 4-0 lead before allowing three runs in the 7th...The Bucs added a run each in the 8th and 9th innings to seal the victory.

Duke was the Opening Day starter and received a no-decision in Pittsburgh’s 4-2, 10-inning victory in Houston on 4/2...He tossed 4.0 scoreless frames before surrendering a two-run homer to Luke Scott in the 5th inning...The Pirates scored once in the 9th to tie the game and twice in the 10th for the win.

Duke went 0-2 with a 6.35 ERA in six Grapefruit League starts...He also threw 81 pitches while pitching in a minor league game against Baltimore’s Triple-A affiliate on 3/23 (6.0ip/6h/2r/2er/0bb/3so).

In his rookie season of 2005, Zach went 8-2 with a 1.81 ERA in 14 starts...He posted a 0.92 ERA after his first six starts; just one of four pitchers to record an ERA below 1.00 since 1920 (also Fernando Valenzuela with Dodgers in 1981, Boo Ferris with Braves in 1945 and Steve Rogers with Expos in 1973).

In 24 career starts at PNC Park, Duke has gone 13-6 with a 3.55 ERA (152.ip/60er)...He posted a 9-4 record in 17 starts in 2006.

0-0 with a 2.19 ERA (12.1ip/3er) in two starts. ...He was in line for the win, but received a no-decision in Pittsburgh’s 5-4 loss in the 9th inning @AT&T Park on 6/8 (6.0ip+/3er)...The Giants scored once in the 7th, once in the 8th and won it in the 9th on wild pitch by Matt Capps...He also tossed 6.1 innings of shutout ball but received a no-decision in Pittsburgh’s 2-1 10-inning win on 7/30 at PNC Park...He threw 45 of his 63 pitches for strikes, but did not return following a 2:05 rain delay.

The 28-year-old righthander will be making his second start of the season tomorrow night...His first start in a Pirates uniform was a 7-5 loss to Aaron Harang in Cincinnati last Saturday (4.0ip/8h/6r/6er/5bb/2so)...Went 2-1 with a 3.70 ERA in six games (five starts) during the Grapefruit League season...Was signed as a free agent on 2/1 after spending parts of eight seasons pitching with Montreal/Washington...Went 9-12 with a 5.03 ERA in 30 starts with the Nationals last year, his highest start total since a career-high 34 in 2001.

1-4 with a 5.28 ERA (29.0ip/17er) in five career starts...Made one start in 2006 and suffered 8-6 loss @AT&T Park (3.2ip/6er)...Picked up lone win on 5/12/02 while pitching in Montreal...Made major league debut in SF on 8/16/99 and lost a 7-4 decision (6.0ip/4r/1er).

In the current fan balloting tally for the All-Time Rawlings Gold Glove Team, Roberto Clemente ranks second behind Willie Mays among all outfielders (three outfielders will be chosen)...Bill Mazeroski is currently fourth among second basemen, behind Joe Morgan, Roberto Alomar and Ryne Sandberg...Fans can continue to vote until June 19 at www.RawlingsGoldGlove.com.

  • With 498 career victories, Jim Tracy is just two wins shy of 500 in his managerial career, He will become the 12th active manager with 500 career wins.
  • The entire Pirates team will wear uniform #42 during Major League Baseball’s Jackie Robinson celebration on Sunday, April 15...Baseball’s national celebration of the 60th anniversary of Robinson’s major league debut will take place at Dodger Stadium on April 15 prior to the game between the Dodgers and Padres.
  • Prior to tonight’s game, the Pirates announced that the club will retire the number 11 worn by Hall of Fame outfielder Paul Waner...Today marks the anniversary of Waner’s big league debut with the Pirates in 1926...The team will hold a pregame ceremony on July 21 to officially add Waner’s name to the list of retired numbers along the club level facade..The July 21 date marks the anniversary of Waner’s induction into the Hall of Fame in 1952.
  • The Pirates won six of their seven games played against San Francisco last year, winning all three played at PNC Park while holding the Giants to just four runs.

Pitcher John Grabow (left elbow irritation - eligible on 4/7) is on the 15-day disabled list.

Saturday vs. San Francisco 7:05 LHP Barry Zito (0-2, 8.18 ERA) vs. RHP Tony Armas (0-1, 13.50 ERA) NO TV
Sunday vs. San Francisco 1:35 RHP Matt Cain (0-1, 2.77 ERA) vs. Ian Snell (0-1, 2.08 ERA) FSNP

Through The Dugout:
Jose Bautista - Has started each of the first nine games at third base...Went deep for first time this season on Tuesday.

Jason Bay - has hit 99 home runs in his career, 98 coming in a Pirates uniform. With his next homer, he will become just the sixth Canadian-born player with 100 or more home runs in the major Larry Walker (368), Matt Stairs (220), Jeff Heath (194), Corey Koskie (124) and George Selkirk (108).

Jose Castillo - Started each of the first four games at second base...Picked up lone hit on 4/3 in Houston.

Humberto Cota - Made second start/appearance Wednesday vs. St. Louis and went 1-for-3 with an RBI.

Chris Duffy - Has hit safely in seven of his eight games...Had first three-hit game of season Wednesday vs. St. Louis.

Brad Eldred - Made start at first base Wednesday afternoon vs. St. Louis and went hitless in five at bats.

Don Kelly - Was hit by a pitch in pinch hit appearance on Wednesday (scored later in the inning).

Adam LaRoche - Has started eight of the first nine games at first base (sat out Wednesday’s contest with a stiff back).

Nate McLouth - Popped out in pinch hit appearance Wednesday - has gone 3-for-5 with a home run as a pinch hitter in 2007.

Xavier Nady - Went 2-for-4 with a walk in Wednesday’s 3-2 loss to the Cardinals at PNC Park.

Ronny Paulino - Has started seven of the first nine games at catcher (did not play Wednesday and on 4/7 in Cincinnati).

Freddy Sanchez - Went 3-for-5 with a double and a run scored Tuesday night vs. St. Louis.

Jack Wilson - Has started all nine games at shortstop...Has hit safely in seven of the nine games (four multi-hit games).

Through The Pen:
Jonah Bayless - Tossed 1.2 scoreless frames Wednesday vs. St. Louis...Has allowed just three hits (5.0ip) in his team-high tying six appearances.

Matt Capps - Pitched 1.0 scoreless frame Wednesday vs. St. Louis...Singled off Todd Coffey for first major league hit in 8th inning Sunday at CIN.

Shawn Chacon - Tossed 2.0 scoreless frames Tuesday night vs. St. Louis...Also worked 2.0 scoreless frames last Saturday in Cincinnati.

Damaso Marte - Allowed his two inherited runners to score in 3-0 loss to St. Louis Monday afternoon (gave up two-run double to Preston Wilson).

Juan Perez - Retired the only batter he faced Wednesday vs. St. Louis...Has appeared in five games but has pitched a total of 2.0 innings.

Salomon Torres - Surrendered a pinch-hit home run in ninth inning to St. Louis’ Chris Duncan on Wednesday and suffered first loss.

John Wasdin - Allowed one run in the 12th inning and suffered first loss Tuesday night vs. St. Louis.

Player Images from Pressbox on MLB.com
Complete Game Notes can be found at Presspass on MLB.com

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