Hurdle Changes His Mind, Plus News on Taillon

During his pre-game gathering with the media, manager Clint Hurdle dropped a few pieces of interesting information regarding the current roster.

First thing, Hurdle says that Jameson Taillon will return to the starting rotation next week. At this point, no public decision was announced as to who Taillon will replace in the starting five. Barring either Ivan Nova or Gerrit Cole going to the disabled list, the decision will come down to either Tyler Glasnow or Chad Kuhl.

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The Pirates Need to Give Elias Diaz His Chance

It may have taken nine years to happen, and it may be very temporary, but for the time being, Elias Diaz is the starting catcher for the Pirates.

With Chris Stewart recovering from a hamstring injury and Francisco Cervelli being placed on the seven day concussion disabled list Wednesday, Diaz is finally getting an honest look in the majors. The circumstances could obviously be better, but it’s the opportunity he’s wanted and deserves.

“In my minor league career, I’ve been an everyday catcher, so here in the big leagues, that’s what I want to do,” Diaz said Thursday. “It’s no different to me.”

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Perrotto: Time Has Arrived to Try Rivero as Closer

Tony Watson undoubtedly played a significant — if, at times, unheralded — role in the Pirates making three consecutive postseason appearances from 2013-15 while ending their record string of 20 consecutive losing seasons

Serving as a set-up man to Jason Grilli, then Mark Melancon, Watson had a spectacular three-year run than included a 1.97 ERA and 0.95 WHIP in 222 games and 224 1/3 innings.

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Perrotto’s 3 Thoughts: Could Pirates Be Deadline Buyers?

Three thoughts on the Pirates:

  1. Hold off on that trade

It has been suggested in various corners — including this one — that the Pirates would be wise to gauge interest in right-hander Gerrit Cole when the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline approaches.

The Pirates would seemingly get a bundle in a trade for a 27-year-old pitcher who won 19 games two years ago — though he is suppressing his trade value with a recent stretch of rough outings — and cannot become a free agent until following the 2019 season.

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3 Up, 3 Down: May 29th-June 4th

Welcome to 3 Up, 3 Down: a weekly recap and preview for the Pirates. This post refers to  games from May 29-June 4, a stretch where the Pirates lost two out of three at home to the Diamondbacks (5/29-5/31) before taking two out of three on the road against the Mets (6/2-6/4).

3 UP

Trevor Williams turned in a pair of quality starts this week, going six innings Monday against the Diamondbacks and seven innings Sunday against the Mets, only allowing one run in both outings. He struck out six and walked two in that stretch. If his first start against the Dodgers is excluded, Williams has a 2.83 ERA ever since taking over for Jameson Taillon

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Pirates Flashback #1: Jack Wilson

Welcome to Pirates Flashback, a weekly look back at some of the best players of the worst teams in Pirates’ history. Today’s player is Jack Wilson, who played shortstop for the Pirates from 2001 to 2009.

BEFORE THE BUCS

Wilson was drafted out of Oxnard College by the St. Louis Cardinals in the ninth round of the 1998 draft. He rose all the way to AA before being dealt to the Pirates in 2000 for Jason Christiansen. He made his major league debut April 3, 2001.

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Scouting Report on Top AAA Indianapolis Prospects

After a rough start to the season, the Pirates AAA affiliate Indianapolis Indians had a great month of May.

Last night, left-hander Steven Brault was dominant in shutting out Lehigh Valley, which is the top team in AAA baseball.

Brault went 7 innings allowing only 5 hits, 0 runs, 0 walks and striking out 8 batters. The 25-year old lowered his season ERA to 2.20, which is the second lowest in the International League.

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