Originally written on Raise the Jolly Roger!  |  Last updated 6/15/12

Pirates (32-30) at Indians (32-30)

7:05 PM EST–Progressive Field, Cleveland

Here is the MLB.com Gameday

TV: ROOT Sports

The Bucs will try and completely forget that awful Baltimore series as they head in Cleveland this week to take on the Indians for the weekend.

About the Indians:

A couple of strange similarities here: The Pirates and Indians have the same record, run differential (-31), and were both swept on the road this week. The Indians haven’t pitched well at all — their 301 runs allowed are the second-most in the AL, which should bode well for the Pirate bats.  Still, the Tribe (just 1.5 back in the AL Central) has been able to hang around despite relatively low expectations, and you may recall the Bucs were swept in Cleveland last season.

Also of note, Cleveland’s Michael Brantley enters the game with MLB’s longest active hitting streak (21).

News:

  • Gerrit Cole was promoted to AA this afternoon.
  • Jameson Taillon, however, is still in Bradenton. Tim takes a look at his recent struggles here.
  • Rob King will be calling the game on ROOT tonight in place of Tim Neverett, who has a family function in Pittsburgh.
  • The lineup tonight features Josh Harrison at short and Garrett Jones as the DH.

Tonight’s starters…

James McDonald (5-2, 2.39) vs. Justin Masterson (2-6, 4.76)

After three straight dreadful pitching performances, the Pirates really need McDonald to come up big and deliver a strong start. He’s done so all year…except for his last outing, in which he lasted just four innings against the Royals. A bounceback start would be enormous both for J-Mac alone and the team.

Masterson hasn’t been very good this season, but will put together a good-looking outing now and then. It’s highly probably that will happen tonight, but the good news is that the Pirate bats were actually OK in two of the three Baltimore losses. Let’s hope they keep hitting the ball somewhat well.

Pirates vs. Masterson:

PA AB H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS Garrett Jones 6 5 2 0 0 0 1 1 1 .400 .500 .400 .900 Andrew McCutchen 6 6 0 0 0 0 1 0 2 .000 .000 .000 .000 Neil Walker 6 6 3 0 0 0 1 0 1 .500 .500 .500 1.000 Rod Barajas 5 5 1 0 0 0 0 0 2 .200 .200 .200 .400 Pedro Alvarez 3 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 .000 .000 .000 .000 Jose Tabata 3 3 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 .333 .333 .333 .667 Brad Lincoln 2 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000 .000 .000 .000 Total 31 29 7 0 0 0 3 1 8 .241 .267 .241 .508 Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 6/15/2012.

The only Indians hitter that has faced J-Mac is Jose Lopez (1 for 4 with a HR and a strikeout).

Photo: Sonnett / Flickr.com

©2012 Raise the Jolly Roger. All Rights Reserved.

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