Charlie Morton returns to the mound as the underdog Pirates attempt to take the series in Colorado. The Rockies have clinched the season series after their strong performance in the home opening series in Pittsburgh. Although the Bucs offense has been terrible, we like the Buccos to win today and take some momentum into San Diego.
The Rockies are on top of the NL West despite weak hitting and scoring just 20 runs in the last seven games. Watching Morton pitch in his last outing, it doesn’t seem likely that a slumping Rox lineup will be able to handle the growing repretoire of the Electric Stuff.
Morton has a 3.00 ERA in two starts against Colorado. The Pirates offense is even worse than the Rockies, but we think they will improve their record to 13-15 today. The pitching staff has received little support in the past five games as the Bucs bats have plated three or fewer runs each game.
Morton threw seven innings, allowed five hits and two earned runs despite walking five on April 9 this year against the Rox.
Not So Sweet Sixteen
Jose Tabata has a tight hamstring (it seemed like a weekly thing in the minors) and seems doubtful to start today. We trust Xavier Paul can get a start rather than Matt Diaz despite Diazs’ .318 career average against Colorado. Remember, Diaz hits lefties. At least that’s what we understand from history, but Diaz has just one hit in 16 at-bats against the southpaws on the season and is also in the middle of a 1-for-16 slump.
Andrew McCutchen has hit bombs in the past two games. He has nine extra base hits at Coors Field in his career, it would have been ten if not for a nice play from Seth Smith last night.
How about Garrett Jones who has only three hits at PNC Park, but is 15-for-45 on the road. Strange.
In the past 13 games, GFJ is 13-for-39 with eight walks, and four homers. The downside is the fact that his teammates haven’t been on base resulting in only six runs being driven in during the hot streak.
Ubaldo Jimenez has pitched insanely well against the Pirates. He has a 1.54 ERA in five starts. This year hasn’t been his record setting pace he was on last year however. Jimenez has an 6.75 ERA in three starts. He was on the DL with a cracked cuticle on his right thumb, apparently because he doesn’t have a good manicurist.
Against Florida he struck out seven and allowed just one hit over five innings. Against the Bucs today, the Pirates will eat up his fastball just enough to get Charlie Morton his first career win against the Rockies.
The cool Colorado vibes.
It all adds up to some electric stuff in Denver.