May 4, 2007

Pre-Game Notes


PITTSBURGH PIRATES (13-14) vs. MILWAUKEE BREWERS (18-10)
MAY 4, 2007 AT MILLER PARK --- GAME #28, ROAD #15
LHP PAUL MAHOLM (1-3, 5.28 ERA) vs. RHP CLAUDIO VARGAS (2-0, 3.68 ERA)
8:05 EDT FSNP


TODAYS STARTER:
PAUL MAHOLM:
The 24-year-old lefthander is making his sixth start of the season this evening.

LAST START:
Paul had his shortest outing of the season and lost a 9-5 decision to Cincinnati’s Aaron Harang Sunday afternoon at PNC Park...He took a 4-1 lead into the fourth inning before the Reds eruped for a five run inning to take a 6-4 lead...Maholm gave way to the bullpen after 4.0 innings of work.

FIRST CAREER SHUTOUT:
Maholm tossed his first major league complete game in a 3-0 blanking of the Astros at PNC Park on April 24...He threw a total of 99 pitches, retired each of the last 12 batters he faced and did not allow a runner to get to second base.

GETTING PAST THE FIRST:
Maholm has allowed four first inning runs in his first five starts in 2007...He allowed a total of 29 first-inning runs in his 30 starts last season, including 17 in his last 13 starts...He posted an 8.40 ERA (30.0ip/28er) in the first inning last year and a 4.01 ERA (146.0ip/65er) after the opening frame.

LIMITING THE LEFTIES:
Among the 24 home runs he has allowed in the major leagues, Maholm has surrendered just one to a left-handed batter...Minnesota’s Jason Kubel took him deep last year on 6/17...Overall he has held lefties to a .215 batting average (40-for-186).

ON THE ROAD:
Paul is 0-2 in his first two starts on the road this year...He picked up his last win away from PNC Park on September 9, 2006 at Cincinnati.

MAHOLM vs. MILWAUKEE:
2007:
0-1 with a 7.50 ERA (6.0ip/5er) in one start...He allowed three first inning runs and lost a 7-3 decision (6.0ip/5er) to Claudio Vargas on 4/18 at Miller Park.

CAREER:
2-1 with a 3.54 ERA (28.0ip/11er) in four starts...Last year he went 1-0 with a 3.86 ERA (14.0ip/6er) in two starts...He made his major league debut in Milwaukee on 8/30/05 and held the Brewers scoreless for 8.0 innings, surrendering four hits and three walks while striking out five while earning the win over Doug Davis.

TOMORROW'S STARTER:
ZACH DUKE:
The 24-year-old lefthander will be making his seventh start of the season tomorrow night...Received a no-decision in his last start; a 3-2 Pittsburgh win over the Cubs at PNC Park Monday night (6.2ip/8h/2r/2er/2bb/4so)...Has posted a 1.98 ERA (13.2ip/3er) in his last two starts after losing two in a row...Was the Opening Day starter and received a no-decision in Pittsburgh’s 4-2, 10-inning win over the Astros in Houston on 4/2 (7.0ip/2er)...Picked up first victory in second start on 4/8 at Cincinnati (6.0ip+/3er)...Has allowed a total of 11 first inning runs in his last four starts.

vs. MILWAUKEE:
0-1 with a 15.75 ERA (4.0ip/7er) in one start this year...He allowed four first inning runs and lost a 7-5 decision to Jeff Suppan at Miller Park on 4/19...3-2 with a 4.62 ERA (48.2ip/25er) in eight career starts, including a 3-1 record and a 4.11 ERA in five starts last year.

ALL-STAR VOTING:
Beginning May 1st at PNC Park, fans will be able to vote for the players for this year’s All-Star Game, which is scheduled to be played at AT&T Park in San Francisco on Tuesday, July 10...A total of eight Pirates are on this year’s ballot (Jason Bay, Freddy Sanchez, Jack Wilson, Adam LaRoche, Jose Bautista, Chris Duffy, Xavier Nady and Ronny Paulino)...Voting at PNC Park will continue through June 17...Twenty-one million ballots will be distributed at the 30 Major League ballparks and an additional 1.7 million ballots will be distributed to 95 Minor League Baseball Clubs that are in-season during the balloting period.

ONLINE ALL-STAR VOTING:
MLB All-Star Voting

ALL-TIME RAWLINGS GOLD GLOVE:
Vote on the All-Time Rawlings Gold Glove Team. Roberto Clemente and Bill Mazeroski are on the ballot and need your support...Fans can continue to vote until June 19 at www.RawlingsGoldGlove.com.

TEAM NOTES:
Pittsburgh pitchers and catchers have caught each of the last five base runners attempting to steal and eight of the last 10...So far this season, the Pirates have nabbed 12-of-28 (43%)...The Pirates lead all National League teams with 10 caught stealings recorded by the catchers.

ON THE D.L.:
Catcher Humberto Cota (left shoulder strain - eligible on 5/8) and pitcher John Wadin (right thumb sprain - eligible on 5/18) are on the 15-day disabled list.

UPCOMING PITCHING MATCHUPS:
Saturday at Milwaukee 6:05 LHP Zach Duke (1-2, 6.06 ERA) vs. RHP Jeff Suppan (4-2, 2.55 ERA) FSNP
Sunday at Milwaukee 1:05 RHP Tony Armas (0-2, 8.66 ERA) vs. RHP Ben Sheets (2-2, 4.25 ERA) FSNP
Monday OFF DAY IN CHICAGO

Through The Dugout:
Jose Bautista - Has started all 27 games at third base...Leads all N.L. third basemen in fielding pct. (no errors/97 chances).

Jason Bay - Has gone 13-for-26 (.500) with 2 doubles, 2 triples, 4 HR, 6 RBI and 9 runs in last 7 games at Miller Park.

Jose Castillo - Grounded out as a pinch hitter on Tuesday (has gone 0-for-4 off the bench).

Ryan Doumit - Has gone 11-for-24 (.458) with three doubles, two homers and six RBI since being recalled on 4/26.

Chris Duffy - Has reached base safely in 21 of his 25 starts in CF...Is hitting .333 (8-for-24) in his last six road games.

Brad Eldred - Was walked intentionally as a pinch hitter on Thursday...Had second two-hit game of the season last Friday

Don Kelly - Grounded out as pinch hitter on Wednesday...Singled as a pinch hitter in Los Angeles on 4/22.

Adam LaRoche - Has reached base safely in 19 of his 25 games with a PA...Has hit safely in seven of his last nine games.

Nate McLouth - Is hitting at a .364 clip (4-for-11) with nobody on base.

Xavier Nady - Started in RF Thursday night - his first action since suffering left hamstring strain in Los Angeles on 4/21.

Ronny Paulino - Has thrown out nine of the 14 runners attempting to steal against him.

Freddy Sanchez - Has a four-game hitting streak (7-for-17, .412)...Has gone 5-for-13 in May after batting .224 in April.

Jack Wilson - Has hit safely in 12 of his last 14 games, going 18-for-58 (.310) with 11 runs scored.

Through The Pen:
Jonah Bayliss - Has surrendered six hits and five runs in his last two outings (0.1ip), raising ERA from 3.00 at the end of April to 6.57.

Matt Capps - Has made nine straight scoreless appearances (8.1ip)...Has been scored upon just once (4/13 at St. Louis) in first 16 outings.

Shawn Chacon - Made his 200th career appearance while tossing 3.0 scoreless frames against the Cubs at PNC Park Wednesday afternoon.

John Grabow - Retired first two Chicago batters he faced Tuesday before being charged with two earned runs.

Damaso Marte - Tossed a scoreless 9th inning against Chicago on Wednesday...Has made four straight scoreless outings (2.2ip).

Marty McLeary - Was recalled today from Indianapolis (AAA), where he went 2-1 with a 2.57 ERA (21.0ip/16h/10r/6er/5bb/16so) in four starts.

Salomon Torres - Picked up his ninth save Thursday night (third straight)...Has 21 saves in 25 chances since September 1, 2006.

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

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