Grapefruit League Game 9: Pittsburgh Pirates v. Boston Red Sox
On Saturday afternoon, the Pittsburgh Pirates will play their ninth Grapefruit League game of the spring. The Pirates are set to host their Opening Day opponent: the Boston Red Sox. First pitch is scheduled for 1:05 PM.
For the Bucs, right-handed pitcher Chad Kuhl will make the start. While Clint Hurdle has not yet made it official, odds are, Kuhl is a lock to make the rotation out of Spring Training. This will be Kuhl’s third start of the spring.
In his first start Kuhl pitched two scoreless innings. This included him debuting a new change up. Developing a change up is very important for Chad Kuhl because last season he lacked a third pitch. If Kuhl is going to be successful in the Major Leagues, he needs a third pitch. Hopefully, his change up will be just that.
The Pittsburgh Pirates starting lineup for today is as follows:
- Josh Harrison – 2B
- Starling Marte – CF
- Andrew McCutchen – RF
- Gregory Polanco – LF
- Francisco Cervelli – C
- David Freese – DH
- Jordy Mercer – SS
- Jose Osuna – 1B
- Eric Wood – 3B
Former Pirate Brock Holt, Chris Young, Jackie Bradley Jr., and Pablo Sandoval are among the regulars scheduled to start for the Red Sox this afternoon. Ex-National League Central foes Allen Craig, Brian Bogusevic, and Junior Lake are in the Boston lineup as well.
Andrew McCutchen, Francisco Cervelli, Gregory Polanco, and Starling Marte are all slated to leave the Bucs to join their respective World Baseball Classic teams on Monday. Due to this, Saturday’s game will be the last game in the Grapefruit League for these four players for at least the next few weeks.
Also, first baseman Josh Bell is set to return to the lineup on Monday. This will be Bell’s first Grapefruit League action after having minor knee surgery in early February. All signs point toward Bell being ready for Opening Day.