Pre-game links and lineups

Link Roundup

  • Pedro Alvarez, who has missed the past two games because of this, is back in the lineup at third base
  • Alvarez’s agent, Scott Boras, said he’s “open” to a long-term deal between his client and the Pirates.
  • At 26, Alvarez has likely already peaked for a player with his type of peripherals — plus power, tons of strikeouts, about seven percent walk rate. And after catching a replay of his walk-off homer against the Rockies in 2010, which was highlighted by ROOT as one of the most memorable moments in PNC Park’s 1,000-game history, I noticed how much thinner Alvarez looked. (Not that he was a stick figure at that time, but certainly El Tor(s)o has plumped up.) I remember Pedro’s weight being controversial going into the 2011 season, which could have been just media/outraged-fan embellishment. But anybody with Alvarez’s given body type is going to become naturally bigger with time. His defense has been above average (based on DRS and UZR — excellent based on my eyes) at third, but he could have to move off of the position by the time he’s no longer under team control in 2016. In short, the Pirates don’t need to worry about signing Alvarez long-term when they’ll already have him through his most productive years.

  • Keith Law’s most recent mock draft has the Pirates taking HS catcher Reese McGuire at no. 9 and New Mexico 3B/1B DJ Peterson with the 14th overall pick. In the next few days, I’ll post some bios and reports on McGuire, Peterson and other guys who the Bucs could select in the first round on June 6.
  • Maybe that odd, two-city-four-game series with the Tigers took its toll on the Pirates offense because of the travel. Fix it with a little nap.
  • Shelby Miller was again dominant, shutting out the Giants in the first game of the teams’ double header. Miller now has a 1.82 ERA and 72 strikeouts in 69 1/3 IP.
  • Mariners catcher Jesus Montero has been placed on the 60-day DL with a torn left meniscus. It’s tough to recall a blockbuster deal like the Montero-Michael Pineda swap that has been so abysmal for both teams — especially given the youth/pedigree of both players.
  • Bryce Harper has been placed on the 15-day DL. Reports say it’s because of knee bursitis, but we all know Bryce wants to focus on the early stages of his modeling career.

Game 55 — PNC Park, 7:15 p.m.

Lineups:

Reds (34-21)
1. Shin-Soo Choo – CF
2. Zack Cozart – SS
3. Joey Votto – 1B
4. Brandon Phillips – 2B
5. Jay Bruce – RF
6. Todd Frazier – 3B
7. Devin Mesoraco – C
8. Derrick Robinson – LF
9. Mike Leake – P

Pirates (34-21)
1. Alex Presley – LF
2. Neil Walker – 2B
3. Andrew McCutchen – CF
4. Garrett Jones – 1B
5. Russell Martin – C
6. Pedro Alvarez – 3B
7. Travis Snider – RF
8. Clint Barmes – SS
9. Francisco Liriano – P

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By tyle23r

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