PITTSBURGH (93-7 The FAN) — It’s no secret by now. The Pirates can’t score runs.
Well, they can, but the production has to improve.
Through five games this season the Pirates (2-3) have scored just nine runs. Five of those runs came in a 5-4 win to close out the Philadelphia series on Sunday.
So with that, the Buccos have managed just a run a game in their other four contests.
Pittsburgh will try and correct that problem at 10 p.m. tonight at the Los Angeles Dodgers for the third game of a three-game series.
Now, much of the struggles at the plate probably have to do with the fact that they’ve faced stellar starting pitching each game, including three former Cy Young winners (Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee and Clayton Kershaw). But the fact remains the same: the Pirates must score more runs.
It’s imperative, considering the fact that the Pirates’ starting pitching has been equally as stellar. In fact, the starting rotation has the best ERA in the league at 2.05.
Here’s the starting pitching numbers through five games:
- Erik Bedard: 0-2, 2.25 ERA, 7 Ks, 2 BBs, 1.33 WHIP.
- Jeff Karstens: 0-0, 1.50 ERA, 2 Ks, 1 BB, 1.00 WHIP.
- James McDonald: 0-0, 3.00 ERA, 3 Ks, 2 BB, 1.00 WHIP.
- Kevin Correia: 0-0, 1.50 ERA, 3 Ks, 2 BBs, 1.00 WHIP.
Juan Cruz, Joel Hanrahan, Jared Hughes and Chris Resop have combined for 8 2/3 innings of scoreless relief, as well.
Last night’s game was the first of the season without a quality start, as Bedard gave up one run on eight hits in five innings.
Jeff Karstens takes the mound tonight for the Pirates against Chris Capuano — a pitcher that could be hittable for Pirates bats. Capuano allowed four runs in 4 2/3 innings in his first start of the season.
With the middle of the Dodgers’ lineup — Matt Kemp, Juan Rivera and Andre Ethier — driving in runs through two games this series, the Buccos’ pitching is gonna need some production to avoid a three-game sweep.
Game Day Reading:
- Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said after last night’s game “We’ve got to do a better job of connecting the dots offensively.”
- Infielder Casey McGehee has three extra-base hits so far this season and says “the bat feels right” in his hands.
- McEffect has the pitch f/x from Eric Bedard’s start Wednesday night.
- Josh Bell hit his first home run as a professional, as North Side Notch explains in its minor league roundup.
- The Pirates were flat Wednesday night and, as I pointed out above, can’t seem to string quality at-bats together to produce runs.