Found July 17, 2012 on Pirates Prospects:

A few notes to wrap up the night.

**Starling Marte had a great game tonight. That’s good to see. I pointed out two days ago the mini slump Marte was in. A few weeks ago I pointed out that his hot streak was only an equally long nine games. My point in all of this hasn’t been to say that one stretch is legit, or to make a claim one way or the other that he’s ready/not ready. My point is to give him more time to show which version is the real thing. Is it the ten game stretch where he was on fire at the plate? Or the ten game stretch where he struck out a third of the time?

Marte had an amazing June, hitting for a .325/.385/.558 line. At the start of the month, I said I’d give him another month, and if he continued that hitting, it would look like he was ready. So far he’s hitting better than last month, with a .333/.414/.667 line in July. The “give him another month” was met with “what difference will one month make?” comments. Those assumed that he was ready, and that the extra month was just going through the motions until his call-up. The extra month suggestion was to give him enough time to prove he was ready. And so far he’s proving it.

We could be getting close to #FreeStarlingMarte time.

**Imagine losing Andrew McCutchen for 3-4 weeks in the current NL Central race. That’s basically what happened to the Cincinnati Reds when they lost Joey Votto today. Votto had the second best OPS in the majors this year, behind McCutchen. The Pirates lost tonight, but remain a game behind the Reds after Cincinnati lost. With Votto out, we could see the Reds in the loss column a bit more often over the next 3-4 weeks.

**You know trade season is in full swing when a late scratch sparks trade rumors. Carlos Quentin was scratched from tonight’s game, and immediately the speculation began. It turned out that Quentin was scratched with knee soreness.

Links and Notes

**The Pirates lost 5-4 to the Rockies.

**Pirates Notebook: Bucs Can’t Pull Off Comeback Win; McCutchen Wins Two Awards.

**Prospect Watch: Starling Marte Just Misses Cycle, Tony Sanchez Hits Fifth Homer.

**Homers From Sanchez and Marte Give Indians The Win.

**Prospect Notebook: Trading From the Rule 5 Candidates.

**Monday Trade Rumors: Shane Victorino, Matt Garza, Starling Marte.

**Drew Sutton Adding a Spark to the Top of the Lineup.

**Alex Presley Activated From DL, Hague Optioned.

**Prospect Trends — Week Ending 7/15.

**Minor League Schedule: 7/17/12.


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