The Pittsburgh Pirates will try to extend their win streak to five games tonight against the Miami Marlins at PNC Park. The Bucs are 6-2 against teams from the National League Eastern Division this season.
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The crew of the Jolly Roger got back to .500 with their 4-2 Memorial Day victory over the Marlins. With their record at 22-22, the Pirates are in third place in the NL Central Division. They are six 1/2 games behind the first place St. Louis Cardinals (29-16).
During this homestand, Pittsburgh has improved their record to 13-9 along the North Shore while they are 9-13 on the road. If the Bucs win this evening, they will have won four consecutive home series against the Marlins.
Charlie Morton (1-0) made his 2015 debut Monday after hip surgery last September. In picking up the victory, the 6-foot-5, 235-pound righthander has 17 career wins at PNC Park. The Pirates defense turned a pair of double plays over the course of the evening in helping Morton, 3-6-1 and 5-4-1, to keep the Marlins offense off the scoreboard.
Clint Hurdle said on the team web site after the victory, “This isn’t the ’13 team. This isn’t the ’14 team. This is the ’15 team, that to me hadn’t established any identity through the first 40 games. … I like the way this team has responded. I like this team a lot. I like their makeup. I like their guts. But we’ve got to play better baseball.”
The Boys from South Beach (18-28) are in last place in the NL East, just half-a-game back of the fourth-place Philadelphia Phillies (19-28). They are 10-15 at home and 8-13 on the road. This series with the Bucs is their first one this season against an NL Central opponent. Manager Dan Jennings’ squad is the lowest scoring team in the league at 3.2 runs per game. They have only one victory in their last 10 contests at PNC Park.
When: Tuesday, May 26
First Pitch: 7:05 p.m. ET
Site: PNC Park
Playing Surface: Natural Grass
Television Coverage: ROOT Sports Network
Radio Coverage: KDKA-FM 93.7 – The Fan
Announcers: Greg Brown, Tim Neverett, Bob Walk, Steve Blass, and John Wehner
Live (Pay) Streaming: MLB.TV
Online Highlights: Pirates Video
Sirius XM Satellite Radio: XM Channel 184, XM Internet 861
Odds: Pirates -1.5 According To OddsShark.com with the Over/Under at 8.
Weather Forecast: According to the Weather Channel, the forecast is calling for partly cloudy skies with occasional showers overnight. The low this evening is expected to be 66. Chance of rain is 40%.
Starting Pitchers: The Marlins have called up righthander Jose Urena from their Triple-A affiliate, the New Orleans Zephyrs, to take the place of righthander Mat Latos in the starting rotation. Latos is on the 15-day disabled list with knee inflammation. Urena, 23, made two relief appearances for Miami in April. It will be his Major League starting debut.
The Pirates will seek their sixth victory in eight games by sending Jeff Locke (2-2, 5.28 ERA/1.46 WHIP) to the hill. The 6-foot, 185-pound lefthander went 1-0 with a 3.00 ERA in two starts against the Marlins last season.
Next Matchup: The Pirates and Marlins meet in the final matchup of their three-game set Wednesday at PNC Park. Miami has not announced their starter yet for this game. The Bucs will go with righthander Gerrit Cole (6-2, 2.05 ERA/1.11 WHIP). The first pitch is scheduled for 12:35 p.m. The contest will be on ROOT Sports Pittsburgh.
Beyond The Scoreboard: Coming off the sweep of the Mets, Cole, A.J. Burnett, and Francisco Liriano are the first trio of Pittsburgh pitchers to string together three consecutive double-digit strikeout contests since Sept. 1969 when Bob Veale, Bob Moose, and Dock Ellis accomplished the same feat…The Bucs are third in the league in striking out opponents with 7.8 per game…The Pirates head to San Diego Thursday for a four-game series with the Padres at Petco Park.