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Thread: Game 76 : Pirates vs. Red Sox : 06.25.11

      
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    Default Game 76 : Pirates vs. Red Sox : 06.25.11

    reserved for Kipper's GDT graphic...

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    Default Re: Game 76 : Pirates vs. Red Sox : 06.25.11

    reserved...

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    Default Re: Game 76 : Pirates vs. Red Sox : 06.25.11

    Red Sox-Pirates Preview
    STATS LLC

    In September 1993, Tim Wakefield ended his season with a pair of shutouts at Three Rivers Stadium. He would never pitch again for the Pittsburgh Pirates, who eventually released him.

    Eighteen years and 183 wins later, Wakefield finally returns to Pittsburgh on Saturday night as the Boston Red Sox continue their series with the Pirates at PNC Park.

    A converted infielder, Wakefield (4-2, 4.26 ERA) reached the majors for Pittsburgh in 1992 as a knuckleballing phenom, going 8-1 with a 2.15 ERA as a rookie and winning two more games in that season's NL championship series. He regressed the following year, going 6-11 with a 5.61 ERA and a lengthy stint in the minors, though he shut out the Cubs and Phillies in his final two starts.

    After the Pirates released Wakefield in April 1995, the Red Sox signed him off the scrap heap. With some help from the legendary Niekro brothers, Wakefield rediscovered his knuckler and has been a Boston fixture ever since. Now 44, he is the franchise's all-time leader in starts and innings pitched, and needs 10 wins to surpass Roger Clemens and Cy Young (192) for the most ever in a Red Sox uniform.

    Wakefield began this season in the bullpen doing mop-up duty, but a season-ending injury to Daisuke Matsuzaka brought him back to the starting rotation. He's made the most of the opportunity, going 4-1 with a 3.60 ERA in six starts since joining the rotation full-time late last month. He limited Milwaukee to three runs and three hits in eight innings of Sunday's 12-3 win.

    Wakefield has faced the Pirates once at Fenway Park, throwing seven scoreless innings June 18, 2005, but not getting a decision as Boston lost 2-0.

    The Pirates haven't finished above .500 since Wakefield's rookie season, but they may be making a serious bid to do it again. Pittsburgh (38-37) moved above the break-even mark with Friday night's series-opening 3-1 victory, its third win in a row. This is the latest in a season the Pirates have owned a winning record since Aug. 15, 1999, when they were 59-58.

    Lyle Overbay had two hits and an RBI on Friday, continuing his success against the Red Sox. Overbay has four multihit efforts in his last seven games versus Boston, increasing his career average against the Red Sox to .306 -- 34 points higher than his overall mark.

    "If you're going to try to get a guy back in, maybe there's some familiarity there," manager Clint Hurdle told the Pirates' official website of Overbay, who had sat out this week's three-game series against Baltimore to work on his swing.

    Jeff Karstens (4-4, 2.54) will oppose Wakefield for Pittsburgh. The right-hander has pitched splendidly recently, posting a 1.46 ERA over his last eight starts while never allowing more than two earned runs. However, he's received two runs or fewer of support in all but one of those outings and has a 2-2 record to show for his efforts.

    Karstens had a pair of poor starts against the Red Sox for the Yankees in 2007, going 0-1 while allowing seven runs and 11 hits in 4 1/3 innings. Kevin Youkilis is 3 for 3 with a double off him, while David Ortiz is 2 for 3 with a homer and a double.

    Boston (44-31) still leads the AL East by one-half game over the Yankees, but has dropped three in a row to unlikely opponents San Diego and Pittsburgh after winning 14 of its previous 16.

    Friday's loss opened a nine-game interleague road trip, which presents a dilemma for Boston manager Terry Francona. The Red Sox must either leave David Ortiz on the bench, or start him at first and move Adrian Gonzalez to right field. Ortiz didn't start Friday and likely won't Saturday, either.

    "I'm not happy about David sitting for nine straight games," Francona told the team's official website. "I'm also not happy about putting Gonzi in right field. Neither choice is appealing."

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    Default Re: Game 76 : Pirates vs. Red Sox : 06.25.11

    Starting Pitchers

    Boston: Wakefield (4-2, 4.26 ERA)
    Pittsburgh: Karstens (4-4, 2.54 ERA)

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    Default Re: Game 76 : Pirates vs. Red Sox : 06.25.11

    Gameday Matchup

    stat| Boston| Pittsburgh
    W-L| 44 - 31| 38 - 37
    Night| 27-24| 26-22
    Grass| 39-28 |38-37
    Current Streak| L3| W3
    Last 10| 5-5| 6-4

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    Default Re: Game 76 : Pirates vs. Red Sox : 06.25.11

    Pitching Matchup

    Tim Wakefield: 4-2, 4.26 ERA
    Last appearance:
    6/19 vs MIL
    8.0 IP, 3 ER
    Dec = Win

    Jeff Karstens: 4-4, 2.54 ERA
    Last appearance:
    6/19 at CLE
    7.0 IP, 1 ER
    Dec = ND

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    Default Re: Game 76 : Pirates vs. Red Sox : 06.25.11

    Gameday Lineups

    NO. |Boston |Pittsburgh
    1. | J. Ellsbury, CF | J. Tabata, LF
    2. | D. Pedroia, 2B | C. D'Arnaud, 3B
    3. | A. Gonzalez, 1B |G. Jones, RF
    4. | K. Youkilis, 3B | A. McCutchen, CF
    5. | J. Drew, RF | N. Walker, 2B
    6. | J. Saltalamacchia, C | L. Overbay, 1B
    7. | J. Reddick, LF | R. Cedeno, SS
    8. | M. Scutaro, SS | M. McKenry, C
    9. | T. Wakefield, P | J. Karstens, P

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    Default Re: Game 76 : Pirates vs. Red Sox : 06.25.11

    Research Notes

    Jeff Karstens is 3-0 with an ERA of 1.53 in night starts (1-4, 4.06 ERA in day starts).

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    Default Re: Game 76 : Pirates vs. Red Sox : 06.25.11

    Boston vs. Pittsburgh
    Boston Red Sox (44-31) at Pittsburgh Pirates (38-37), 7:05 p.m.

    (Sports Network) - When Tim Wakefield takes the hill against his former Pirates club for just the second time in his career tonight, a sense of "what if" may just settle into the executive offices of PNC Park.

    Wakefield looks to take another step toward the career 200-win mark as his Boston Red Sox continue a three-game series with a Pittsburgh club hoping to notch a fourth straight victory.

    The Pirates made Wakefield an eighth-round selection in 1988 and he appeared in 27 games with the club in 1992-93, going 14-12. However, command was often an issue for the knuckleballer and he was released by Pittsburgh in 1995.

    Wakefield quickly joined the Red Sox and hasn't left since. He has appeared in 574 games with the Boston franchise, including 415 starts, posting a 183-162 record and 4.39 earned run average.

    Injuries have led to the Red Sox putting the 44-year-old back in the rotation and he has responded with a 4-1 mark over his last six outings. Wakefield pitched a season-high eight innings on Sunday to beat the Brewers, allowing three runs on three hits, two of those homers, and one walk with six strikeouts.

    The righty was also backed by plenty of runs in the 12-3 triumph, something he said helped his outing.

    "I've always said that if the offense scores that many runs it makes my job a lot easier knowing I can make one or two mistakes," said Wakefield, who is now 4-2 with a 4.26 ERA in 17 games (8 starts) this season.

    While Wakefield will be pitching in Pittsburgh for the first time since his final start with the club back on Sept. 30, 1993, the righty did face the franchise in Boston back on June 18, 2005. He got a no-decision with seven scoreless innings.

    The Red Sox would like a similar outing tonight after they dropped Friday's opener, 3-1. Paul Maholm gave up just one run over 5 1/3 innings before turning things over to the bullpen and Jose Tabata hit an RBI single to key a two-run third inning for the Pirates.

    Lyle Overbay singled home an insurance run in the sixth inning to lift the Pirates to a third straight victory. The Red Sox, meanwhile, have lost three in a row for the first time since a four-game skid from May 29-June 1. Their current slide comes on the heels of a 14-2 stretch, but they did maintain their half-game edge over the Yankees for the top spot in the American League East.

    "You know, we had it going so good for so long," said Red Sox manager Terry Francona. "You want the good streaks to be long and the bad ones to be short."

    Jon Lester took the loss for the Red Sox, failing in his bid to become the majors' first 10-game winner, while Kevin Youkilis drove in Boston's only run on a ground out in the first inning.

    Without the designated hitter spot, David Ortiz was out of the starting lineup even though Adrian Gonzalez had volunteered to give up first base and play the outfield, a move Francona could entertain tonight. Ortiz did ground out as a pinch hitter in the eighth inning with two outs and runners on second and third.

    The Pirates will try to break out with some offense tonight for Jeff Karstens, who has given up just two earned runs over his past four starts, spanning 27 2/3 innings, but is 1-0 in that span with Pittsburgh losing two of the games.

    Karstens did not get a decision on Sunday at Cleveland, allowing two runs -- one earned -- on five hits and two walks over seven innings. The righty had a 15 2/3 scoreless-innings streak end in the game and is 4-4 with a 2.54 ERA in 16 games this year, including 12 starts.

    The 28-year-old Karstens has struggled in two games versus Boston, going 0-1 while allowing seven runs over 4 1/3 innings. Ortiz is 2-for-3 with a double, homer and four RBI lifetime against Karstens, while Youkilis is 3-for-3 with an RBI.

    The Red Sox fell to 4-3 all-time versus the Pirates in the regular season, winning three-game sets at Pittsburgh (2003) and Boston (2005).

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    I was at Wakefield's very first start in 1992 at Three Rivers. I sat right behind home plate that game about 10 rows up. I can't remember who was catching that night (I think spanky), but I can remember they had a very tough time catching his knuckleball that night. Four different pitches ended up at the backstop. All were charged as past balls I believe. Wakefield got the win that night and I believe he went the distance in that game. Someone correct if I'm wrong about that. That was 19 years ago so my memory is not perfect about that night. I think he gave up 2 runs in 9 innings of work.

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    Default Re: Game 76 : Pirates vs. Red Sox : 06.25.11

    You know... The Pirates are tied for 3rd place with Cincinnati... Which ain't so bad at this point in the season...

    ... In 2010 the Reds finished 34 games ahead of the Pirates.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NKySteeler View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member. Show Quote
    You know... The Pirates are tied for 3rd place with Cincinnati... Which ain't so bad at this point in the season...

    ... In 2010 the Reds finished 34 games ahead of the Pirates.
    If you would have told me before the season that the Pirates would be just 3 games out in late June, I would have called your airline and told them they currently have a pilot with mental problems!

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    Default Re: Game 76 : Pirates vs. Red Sox : 06.25.11

    Quote Originally Posted by BlackNGoldRules View Post
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    If you would have told me before the season that the Pirates would be just 3 games out in late June, I would have called your airline and told them they currently have a pilot with mental problems!
    LoL!.... I might have questioned myself with a statement like that as well!....

    ... Bottom line to me: We're playing good ball right now. I don't expect us to be in contention at the end of the year, but who knows... I'm just enjoying the ride and having fun, because that's all it really is about (not the "hokey pokey".... errr.... bad joke.... Ha!)

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    Default Re: Game 76 : Pirates vs. Red Sox : 06.25.11

    ... The stream I got has the ****ed crappy Boston announcers again....

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    Default Re: Game 76 : Pirates vs. Red Sox : 06.25.11

    LETS GO BUCS!!!

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