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Lyles stumbles against hard-hitting D-backs

@adamdberry
12:10 AM EDT

PITTSBURGH -- The Pirates saw their rotation’s dominant streak come to an end while their perplexing struggles against the D-backs continued in an 11-2 loss at PNC Park on Wednesday night. Here’s a by-the-numbers look at the Bucs’ fourth consecutive defeat, which brought their record to 12-10 on the year.

Burdi awaiting 2nd opinion on biceps injury

@adamdberry
April 24, 2019

PITTSBURGH -- Pirates reliever Nick Burdi said he is “praying for the best” as he awaits the second opinion on his injured right arm next week. Speaking to the media for the first time since he walked off the mound clutching his right biceps Monday night at PNC Park, Burdi

Wednesday's top prospect performers

@wboor and @GoldenSombrero
29 minutes ago

Here's a look at Wednesday's top Minor League performers from each team's Top 30 Prospects list: Orioles: Adam Hall, SS (No. 14) – 5-for-6, 2B, 2 RBI, SB (Class A Delmarva) Hall boosted his average to .365 with the first five-hit game of his career. Hall collected hits in each

Bucs injury updates: Gonzalez, Marte and more

Dickerson progressing through throwing program; Chisenhall playing in rehab games
@adamdberry
April 24, 2019

PITTSBURGH -- Pirates shortstop Erik González will undergo surgery on Thursday morning to repair the collarbone fracture he sustained when he collided with center fielder Starling Marte on Friday night. Gonzalez will miss at least two months, as he was placed on the 60-day injured list on Saturday. The club

Williams' quality start comes up a little short

Reynolds leaves game as a precaution with left quad discomfort
@adamdberry
April 24, 2019

PITTSBURGH -- The performance of the Pirates’ rotation has left nothing to be desired over the first four weeks of the season. Their starting pitching has put together the best ERA in the National League, and their advantage over the NL’s next-best staff is a full run. But Trevor Williams

A dribbler, a bloop, a blast in 7th haunt Bucs

Pirates allow 7 runs in frame to spoil Musgrove's solid start vs. D-backs
@adamdberry
April 23, 2019

PITTSBURGH -- With Gregory Polanco and Elias Díaz back in their lineup and the Majors’ ERA leader on the mound, the Pirates cruised into the seventh inning with a three-run lead. Then everything went south in a hurry. The D-backs began their rally with a couple of bloops and finished

Bucs 'hoping for the best' on Burdi's 2nd opinion

@adamdberry
April 23, 2019

PITTSBURGH -- The way Nick Burdi crumpled on the mound in tears on Monday night, it probably wasn’t fair to expect truly good news on Tuesday. But the Pirates are hoping their rookie reliever will avoid the worst-case scenario as they send him for a second opinion. The Pirates placed

Polanco comes off IL, doesn't skip a beat

Outfielder goes 2-for-4 in first start of season; lefty Brault optioned
@adamdberry
April 23, 2019

PITTSBURGH -- Gregory Polanco, fresh off some early work in the Pirates’ indoor batting cage, stood in front of his locker and smiled at the question. Isn’t he a little ahead of schedule? “Yeah,” Polanco said, laughing. “A lot.” The Bucs reinstated Polanco from the injured list for Monday night's

Archer's lone mistake to Posey beats Bucs

Pirates' win streak ends at 5 after Buster's 3-run HR, SF's perfect relay in 9th
@adamdberry
April 21, 2019

PITTSBURGH -- After two of his first three starts this season, Chris Archer remarked that the Pirates’ margin for error is small. Their pitching carried them to 12 wins in their first 18 games, but every run -- and every lead -- feels important as their short-handed lineup scraps to

Pirates activate Diaz, put Stallings on IL

Catcher 'happy to be on the team again'; Moran gets first MLB start at second base
@adamdberry
April 21, 2019

PITTSBURGH -- The Pirates on Sunday activated catcher Elias Díaz and put catcher Jacob Stallings on the 10-day injured list with a cervical neck strain. Diaz was set back in Spring Training by a bacterial virus that caused him to miss two weeks of workouts. The Pirates had to put

Need for speed: 1 flamethrower for each team

@williamfleitch
April 22, 2019

Let’s not kid ourselves: the story of baseball in the year 2019 is velocity. Remember back when FOX telecasts used to show a flame going WHOOSH! every time a pitch went over 95 mph? They’d have to do that every pitch now. Pitchers throw harder now than at any time

Two teams gained 9 spots in Power Rankings

@alysonfooter
April 22, 2019

It’s still April, which means the overused trifecta of “it’s still early,” “it’s too early to panic” and “they’re off to a slow start” is not quite ready to be shoved to the back of the sock drawer just yet. It truly is much too early to glean a lot

Pirates prospect has a debut to remember

Tucker hits game-winning homer for first career hit
@adamdberry
April 20, 2019

PITTSBURGH -- Cole Tucker arrived at PNC Park on Saturday morning to find a No. 3 jersey hanging in his new locker in the Pirates’ clubhouse. That uniform was last worn by veteran utility man Sean Rodriguez, who sent a message to Tucker when word surfaced that the 22-year-old shortstop

Collision sends Gonzalez (60-day), Marte to IL

Bucs' SS fractures clavicle; CF sustains bruised abdominal, quad
@adamdberry
April 20, 2019

PITTSBURGH -- The Pirates will be without starting shortstop Erik Gonzalez for at least two months. It’s less clear how long they’ll have to play without Starling Marte, their star center fielder, after he was badly bruised in a collision with Gonzalez on Friday night. Pittsburgh placed Marte on the

Bucs call up prospects Tucker, Reynolds

Marte, Gonzalez placed on injured list as corresponding moves
@adamdberry
April 20, 2019

PITTSBURGH -- Cole Tucker was in bed on Friday night when he got the call that he has been waiting for since the second grade. It was Triple-A Indianapolis manager Brian Esposito, and he told Tucker that the Pirates were promoting him to Pittsburgh. Tucker’s reaction, perhaps censored for the

Lyles dominates again, blanks Giants for 2nd win

Righty gets clipped in 6th but is 'good to go' for next start
@adamdberry
April 20, 2019

PITTSBURGH -- Apparently the only thing that can stop the Pirates’ starting pitching right now is a hard-hit comebacker. Right-hander Jordan Lyles continued an excellent run by Pittsburgh’s rotation on Friday night, striking out six over six scoreless innings, before exiting the Pirates’ 4-1 win over the Giants at PNC

Bucs honor late former GM Harding Peterson

@adamdberry
April 19, 2019

PITTSBURGH -- The Pirates held a moment of silence at PNC Park on Friday night to remember Harding “Pete” Peterson, who was the general manager of Pittsburgh’s last World Series-winning team. Peterson passed away on Tuesday. He was 89 years old. Peterson served as the Pirates’ general manager from 1976-85,

Chisenhall begins rehab assignment in Indy

Newman plays catch; Musgrove and Vazquez visit firefighters
@adamdberry
April 20, 2019

PITTSBURGH -- As the Pirates get healthier, their Triple-A lineup is loading up with talent. Lonnie Chisenhall began his rehab assignment with Triple-A Indianapolis on Friday, starting in left field and going 0-for-3 at the plate. Indianapolis’ lineup also included rehabbing right fielder Gregory Polanco, rehabbing catcher Elias Diaz and

9 players off to hot starts we didn't see coming

@RichardJustice
April 19, 2019

We should have predicted this kind of season coming from Rays second baseman Brandon Lowe. When the Rays believe in a player enough to guarantee him $24 million despite his having played just 43 Major League games, it’s a pretty good indication he’s special. The Rays don’t miss on these

Each NL Central team's secret weapon is ... 

@m_sheldon
April 18, 2019

Everyone knows the big players who must be reckoned with on the five teams in the National League Central. It’s common knowledge, for example, that Josh Hader throws gas and Christian Yelich can rake for the Brewers; that Joey Votto is prolific at reaching base and Luis Castillo has a