July 23: Pirates (42-52) @ D-backs (40-55)
So I know the winters are a plus and I’m sure there are plenty of wonderful things to do around here, but why anyone would want to live here in Phoenix during the summer is still beyond me. Fortunately, things have cooled off to a brisk 103 degrees as of 5 p.m. tonight. The good news is the roof is on tonight and the air conditioning is working. Not much else more matters at this point.
Obviously Steve Pearce is happy to be back and ready for an everyday opportunity that he has never had before. More on that later… And as for losing teammate Adam LaRoche, the consensus around the clubhouse seems to be that while he is already missed as a teammate, everyone is thrilled for him to have the opportunity to jump into a pennant race. And that includes his brother, too.
As for today’s news, notes and randomness…
- Phil Dumatrait’s next rehab start will come with short-season State College on Sunday. Dumatrait made his first rehab appearance on Tuesday in the GCL.
- Jack Wilson remains out of the lineup on Thursday with that nagging hamstring tightness. He is cleared to pinch hit if needed, though he’d likely have to be pinch run for. And on a positive note, he was just on the outfield grass running. There didn’t seem to be any issues with that.
- As he did on Wednesday, Rich Donnelly will be the team’s third base coach on Thursday after Tony Beasley had to leave the team due to a family matter. Donnelly said he was thrilled to be back at “home” as he called it, since he was a third base coach from 1992-2007.
- There is nothing new on the Freddy Sanchez/Wilson contract extension talks, as conversations have not yet been reopened.
- The Pirates announced the signings of two Draft picks on Thursday: RHP Trent Stevenson (7th round) and LHP Zac Fuesser (34th round). The Pirates have now signed 17 of 51 Draft selections.
- In the last nine games, the Pirates have hit 16 home runs. Only the Dodgers (17) have homered more in that period. Even with the sudden spurt of long balls, the Pirates still rank 28th in the Majors in home runs hit this season.
- Garrett Jones expressed a bit of frustration at the fact that all nine of his homers have been solo shots. But he’s not alone. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the first nine homers hit this season by both Mike Cameron and Josh Willingham were also of the solo variety.
- Andrew McCutchen (CF)
- Freddy Sanchez (2B)
- Garrett Jones (LF)
- Ryan Doumit (C)
- Steve Pearce (1B)
- Delwyn Young (RF)
- Andy LaRoche (3B)
- Ramon Vazquez (SS)
- Charlie Morton (RHP)
- Stephen Drew (SS)
- Gerardo Parra (LF)
- Justin Upton (RF)
- Mark Reynolds (3B)
- Miguel Montero (C)
- Chris Young (CF)
- Josh Whitesell (1B)
- Augie Ojeda (2B)
- Dan Haren (RHP)
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