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    Default Pirates Notebook: Karstens NL player of the week

    Pirates Notebook: Karstens NL player of the week
    Tuesday, July 19, 2011
    By Bill Brink, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
    Peter Diana/Post-GazetteJeff Karstens, has gone at least 7 innings in past 8 startsJeff Karstens was named the National League player of the week Monday after his complete-game shutout Friday of the Houston Astros.

    Karstens allowed five hits, struck out two and did not walk a batter in the 4-0 victory at Minute Maid Park. The win improved his record to 8-4 and he has a 2.34 ERA, ranking him sixth among starters in the major leagues.

    "They said it was the most effortless I've looked," Karstens said. "[I was] just pitching, trying to make pitches, not trying to do any more than what I'm capable of."

    Karstens' start Friday was the culmination of a month-and-a-half crescendo of his performance. He pitched into the seventh inning in each of his past eight starts and allowed eight earned runs and seven walks in that span. He has 18 walks in 1072/3 innings this season and lowered his ERA from 3.30 at the beginning of that stretch.

    "I enjoy it for the night, and people say good job, but for me it's stay humble," he said. "At any given point I could go out there and give up eight earned runs. It's happened to everybody. Have fun with it and whatever happens, happens."

    Karstens' five wins in those eight starts helped move the Pirates within a half-game of first place in the Central Division entering the game Monday night against the Cincinnati Reds.

    "It's a lot [more fun] playing these kind of games," he said. "We're able to be playing for something, where in the past we were just playing to finish out the season."

    Pearce close to return
    Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said Steve Pearce, who is currently playing with Class AAA Indianapolis to rehabilitate a strained right calf muscle, is "more than halfway" to the number of at-bats Hurdle would like him to get before returning to the Pirates.

    "He seems to be healthy," Hurdle said. "There's no telling what can happen. He needs a volume of at-bats that's bundled together for me because of the significant time he missed."

    Pearce went on the 15-day disabled list May 30. In four games for Indianapolis entering Monday, Pearce is 6 for 18 with three home runs.

    Beimel's strength returning
    Joe Beimel didn't have as restful an All-Star break as some of his teammates. He came to PNC Park to throw a 35-pitch bullpen session at the end of his rehabilitation stint with Class AA Altoona.

    "I was up and feeling pretty good and feeling strong, just take it day by day now," he said.

    He said the strength in his left arm, which caused him problems during his time on the DL, has not fully returned but will come with time.

    "After being out that long, I still have to build back to where my strength is at its peak," he said.

    "The more I pitch the better it will get. The command is there, all the other pitches are there. I'm feeling confident about that."

    Beimel went on the 15-day disabled list May 28 because of left elbow inflammation and was activated Friday. He allowed three hits in two-thirds of an inning, but no runs, Sunday against Houston.

    Buried treasure
    Hurdle said Jose Tabata, who is on the 15-day disabled list because of a left quadriceps strain, did not resume his rehabilitation Monday with Class A Bradenton. He has not played since Thursday when he felt tightness in the quad.


    First published on July 19, 2011 at 12:00 am


    Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11200...#ixzz1SX0NNwlv
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    Default Re: Pirates Notebook: Karstens NL player of the week

    Karstens deserves the award more than anyone. He has really done alot for this pitching staff while becoming the Ace in the process. Who knows where this team would be if he doesn't step up like he has, certainly not first place as of tonight. Best pitcher in baseball over the last month.
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    Default Re: Pirates Notebook: Karstens NL player of the week

    Fun fact: the only other time Karstens ever recorded an out in the 8th inning of a start was in that perfect game bid back in 2008. He's really gone a long way in the last month and a half to try to shake that "5 inning guy" label. Since June 1 he's gone 7, 7, 6.2, 7, 6.2, 7, 7, and 9 innings.

    Tonight Karstens fell to third in the NL in ERA. He was second coming in, but was passed over by the great Ryan Vogelsong. Vogelsong now leads the NL.

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    Default Re: Pirates Notebook: Karstens NL player of the week

    Quote Originally Posted by jnn123 View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member. Show Quote
    Fun fact: the only other time Karstens ever recorded an out in the 8th inning of a start was in that perfect game bid back in 2008. He's really gone a long way in the last month and a half to try to shake that "5 inning guy" label. Since June 1 he's gone 7, 7, 6.2, 7, 6.2, 7, 7, and 9 innings.Tonight Karstens fell to third in the NL in ERA. He was second coming in, but was passed over by the great Ryan Vogelsong. Vogelsong now leads the NL.
    Ryan freaking Vogelsong, now who saw that coming? Him leading the league in ERA.
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