Found August 19, 2013 on
Pittsburgh Pirates starter Jeff Locke was on a fairytale ride with his amazing season, but after the All-Star Break things have gone south for the young lefty.
On Saturday, the 25-year-old lasted 2 2/3 innings and surrendered eight runs on 10 hits and three walks. That was by far his worst outing of the season.
Locke was brilliant for the Pirates during the first half of the season. He went from barely making the team to being an All-Star in three months. Lockes’s first half ERA was 2.06 with a 1.13 WHIP.
He has slowly regressed the second half. Locke has an ERA of 4.78 and a 2.02 WHIP. That is a drastic jump.
The Diamondbacks jumped out to an early 2-0 lead after Locke walked two of the first four batters he faced and Wil Nieves hit an RBI double down the right field line. He stranded the next two runners, got through the second inning and got two quick outs in the third before everthing went downhill.
Three line-drive singles. Two-RBI ground-ball single. Line-drive single. Three-run Martin Prado home run. Ground-ball single. Then in one glimpse of a moment the Pirates trailed 8-0 and Locke was out of the game.
“My eyes were opened up the other day in Colorado when Liriano didn’t throw the way he expected to throw,” Locke said. “The game sped up a little bit. I was all over the zone, then you throw a pitch over the plate, it’s a hit. Another hit.”
Pittsburgh is now faced with the decision of how to fix Locke. They could skip a start in the upcoming weeks due to a couple off days.
With the call-up of Nick Johnson from Triple-A Indianapolis, the Pirates could spot start the lefty for Locke. Johnson was brilliant in the six innings of relief he pitched on Sunday against the Diamondbacks. Despite suffering the loss, Johnson turned some heads in his major league debut.
Locke, like Gerrit Cole, could benefit from rest. Manager Clint Hurdle said he would talk with Locke and GM Neal Huntington to decide if they will skip one of Locke’s starts or give him more days between starts.
“Absolutely not. If that’s the route that they take, then that’s their decision to make,” Locke said. “But that’s nothing that I’m looking for or want. I want to keep everything as normal as possible, keep throwing on the same amount of rest, keep doing the same thing I do every week. My arm’s really been the least of my worries.”
BEST OF MAXIM
Rob Biertempfel reported yesterday that the Pittsburgh Pirates have been scouting Cuban defector Jose Abreu, and will attend a showcase he will hold in September. The Pirates have been mentioned in the past with Cuban players, but they have never been serious bidders. Most of the international signings the Pirates make are off the radar players like Starling Marte ($85,000), Alen...
The Pirates need to stop bunting away outs. (Photo Credit: David Hague)
In the eighth inning of tonight’s game, Starling Marte led off with a bunt single. The score was tied 2-2, and if the Pirates scored a run they would be able to turn to Mark Melancon for the save in the top of the ninth. The Diamondbacks kept left-hander Wade Miley in to face Jordy Mercer, with Andrew McCutchen...
Gerrit Cole has already passed the number of innings he threw in 2012. (Photo Credit: David Hague)
All three times this year Gerrit Cole has pitched on at least a week of rest, he has gotten a quality start. In his nine other starts, he has only four quality starts.
Small sample size, certainly. We do not yet know if Cole is a better pitcher given more rest, and he will even tell...
Below are the top Runs Created* totals in the Pittsburgh Pirates’ farm system from the last week. The rankings include every hitter who had an at-bat for a Pirates’ minor league affiliate, not including DSL teams, and with no limitations on whether the hitter has prospect eligibility. Players who spent time at different levels are counted multiple times, once for each level,...
Francisco Liriano stopped a longer losing skid by flummoxing the San Diego Padres. (Photo Credit: David Hague)
SAN DIEGO — Francisco Liriano sliced up the San Diego Padres for a season-high 12 strikeouts over seven shutout innings to pave the Pirates’ way to a 3-1 road victory. Pedro Alvarez drove in all three Pittsburgh runs, two with the help of San Diego’s right-field error...
Jeff Locke's All-Star season has helped to give the Pirates one of the most efficient pitching staffs in the major leagues.
The Diamondbacks, meanwhile, would settle for some stability in their rotation.
Locke takes the mound as the Pirates seeks a seventh straight home victory Saturday while facing Diamondbacks starter Trevor Cahill, who returns after a nearly seven-week stint...
It’s a day of unknowns in the Pittsburgh Pirates system, with three teams not announcing their Sunday starter yet. We will update this post throughout the day as the starters are named. The GCL Pirates and both DSL affiliates are off today. For a look at the possible starters over the next few weeks, please check out our Probable Pitchers Chart. Check out the Recent Transactions...
For a season preview of the Pittsburgh Pirates two Dominican Summer League teams, check out our article here. For a recap of the DSL All-Star game, check out our article here. Throughout the year, we will provide the recaps of both teams, as well as highlight one player/stat each day.
Result: Pirates 11, Yankees2 3
Starting Pitcher: Christian Henriquez, LHP...
The Pirates are one of FOX's "National Games" this afternoon, and I hate to keep harping on this because I know it gets old, but once again the Pirates being a "National Game" is terrible news for Pirate fans, because it means that you can only legally watch the game if you live in the Pittsburgh market or a non-California NL West market. To be quite literal...
The Pirates return to Petco Park, where a Padres sweep last August put the collapse in motion.
Fans who keep a close eye on the calendar may notice the Pirates’ August déjà vu.
On Sunday, August 19, 2012, the Pirates won a 19-inning game over the St. Louis Cardinals, then traveled to San Diego. The Padres swept the Bucs and Petco, and Pittsburgh started into a tailspin of 23...
Diamondbacks (63-58) at Pirates (72-50)
1:35 PM–PNC Park, Pittsburgh
Yesterday’s loss wiped out most of the good that Friday’s win did for the Bucs, so now they’re set for an important rubber match game this afternoon with Arizona. The Bucs are looking for their first series win in over a week and they are about to go back on the road for a west coast...
Normally there are certain time periods for a mass wave of minor league promotions. There’s the pre-season, where players start at new levels. The next wave comes around the middle of June, which is the half way point for the five month minor league season. There can be individual promotions here and there surrounding that period, but you don’t see those chain reaction moves...
After a slow start that included two stints on the disabled list, Pirates second baseman Neil Walker is starting to heat up at the plate. The switch hitter is batting .312 is the last 28 days, with one home run and nine RBI. PiratesDugout.com's George Von Benko spoke with Walker recently.
You might have slept through it, but if you did, you missed a historic performance by Francisco Liriano, who once again came up with an incredible effort to halt a mini skid.
Liriano was more dominant than he’s been all season – which is saying quite a bit – and he ended up with more K’s than any Bucco starter since 2004 (Oliver Perez). 2004!! For perspective, opposing starters...
Francisco Liriano took another step toward proving that his dismantling at Coors Field two weeks ago was a fluke.
He carved up the San Diego Padres with a devastating slider forcing swing after swing at nothing but air in the Pirates' 3-1 victory Monday night at Petco Park.
The Pirates maintained their one-game lead over the St. Louis Cardinals in the NL Central after the Cardinals...