Pregame: Pirates vs. Tigers in Bradenton

Good afternoon from McKechnie Field.

  • The Pirates will face the Detroit Tigers at 1:05 today. Right-hander Charlie Morton will face righty Doug Fister.
  • Following Morton in relief are: Joel Hanrahan, Daniel McCutchen, Chris Leroux, and Ryota Igarashi.
  • Morton, 27, is making his third official Grapefruit League Start. He received the loss during his last start on Sunday after allowing five runs on seven hits over three innings. Although Morton referred to his start as “unlucky”.
  • Pirates lineup vs. Tigers:

Jose Tabata 9

Nate McLouth 7

Andrew McCutchen 8

Neil Walker 4

Casey McGehee 5

Matt Hague 3

Rod Barajas 2

Clint Barmes 6

Charlie Morton 1

  • Tigers lineup vs. Bucs: Andy Dirks 8, Brennan Boesch 9, Jhonny Peralta 6, Ryan Raburn 4, Delmon Young 7, Don Kelly 3, Clete Thomas DH, Brandon Inge 5, Gerald Laird 2
  • The Pittsburgh kid Neil Walker will face his brother in-law today. First baseman Don Kelly is married to Neil’s sister.
  • The Pirates will play the Houston Astros tomorrow in Bradenton at 1:05. It will be the fourth straight home game at McKechnie Field. The two clubs will also face off again on Sunday in Kissimee. Right-hander James McDonald will start for the Bucs against righty Kyle Weiland. Chris Resop, Ryota Igarashi and Daniel Moskos are expected to follow in relief.
  • Earlier this morning a feature on infielder Matt Hague was posted. You can read that article here. Hague has eight hits, which include two homers, in his last 14 at-bats. He enters today’s game action with a .448 avg this spring.
  • Some other recent links:

Lefty Erik Bedard will get the Opening Day nod at PNC Park on April 5 –Also in tonight’s notebook, Bedard talks about getting the Opening Day start, which be the third in his career.

Yamaico Navarro is battling for a bench spot this spring

Yesterday’s recap of the Pirates 8-6 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays

  • The Pirates (.283 avg) rank second behind St. Louis (.291) among N.L. teams in batting in the Grapefruit League this spring.
  • Hot Bucs: Clint Barmes has six hits in his last 15 at-bats; Juan Cruz has been scored upon just once in his first six appearances (7.0 innings); Joel Hanrahan has struck out a team-leading 10 batters in his first five outings (5.0 innings); Josh Harrison leads the team with six doubles this spring and currently has a .550 batting average; Andrew McCutchen has 12 hits in his last 25 at-bats; Daniel Moskos has not been charged with an earned run in his first six appearances (6.2 innings).

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