Pirates-Mets Preview Capsule

Pirates (22-26) vs. New York Mets (19-26)

Site: PNC Park

Friday: RHP Chad Kuhl (1-4, 5.85) vs. RHP Jacob deGrom (3-1, 3.56), 7:05 p.m.

Saturday: RHP Gerrit Cole (2-5, 3.36) vs. RHP Zack Wheeler (3-2, 3.74), 7:15 p.m.

Sunday: RHP Tyler Glasnow (2-3, 6.69) vs. RHP Matt Harvey (3-3, 5.36), 8:08 p.m.

NOTES: The Pirates are in last place in the National League Central, four games behind the first-place Chicago Cubs. … The Mets are in third place in the National League East, 8 ½ games behind the first-place Washington Nationals. … The Pirates have won two games in a row and eight of their last 12. … The Mets have lost two games in a row and 10 of their last 13. … The teams are meeting for the first time this season after splitting six games last year. The Pirates are 18-8 against the Mets since the start of the 2013 season. … Pirates LF Adam Frazier is 20-for-47 (.426) with two doubles, two home runs, nine walks and six strikeouts in his last 12 games. … Mets LF Michael Conforto is on a seven-game hitting streak, going 11-for-26 (.423) with two doubles, four home runs, six walks and 11 strikeouts. … Cole is 1-2 against the Mets in his career while Kuhl and Glasnow have never faced them. … deGrom is 0-2 against the Pirates, Harvey is 0-1 and Wheeler has never faced them.

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Perrotto: McCutchen, Watson Ideal Fits for Trade With Nationals

The Washington Nationals have the best record in the National League as they get set to make their lone visit to PNC Park this season.

Though the Nationals are 24-13 going into the three-game series against the Pirates that begins Tuesday night, they are not a perfect team. Washington has yet to settle on a closer six weeks into the season and center fielder/leadoff hitter Adam Eaton sustained a season-ending knee injury last month.

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All Things Considered, Pirates in OK Shape

Few teams, if any, have been forced to deal with the early season issues that Clint Hurdle and the 2017 Pirates have been dealt.

However, after looking at all that has gone wrong and then look where the team sits on May 3rd, I’d say things could be a lot worse.

During spring training, the team found out that their starting 3rd baseman and likely cleanup hitter Jung Ho Kang had legal issues and couldn’t get out of his home country of Korea.

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Sweep of Cubs at Wrigley Field Mixture of Character and Good Timing

The Pirates just concluded a go-figure kind of week.

They scored three runs in both the eighth and ninth innings Sunday to rally for a 6-1 victory over the Chicago Cubs and a three-game sweep of the defending World Series champions at Wrigley Field.

That came in the same week that began with the Pirates being swept in a three-game series by the Cincinnati Reds at PNC Park. The Reds have finished last in the National League Central each of the last two seasons.

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Too Early to Worry About Lack of Clutch Hitting

The numbers are certainly disturbing.

The Pirates have gone 0-for-19 with runners in scoring position during the first two games of their three-game series with the Cincinnati Reds that ends Wednesday night at PNC Park.

In Tuesday night’s 6-2 loss, the Pirates stranded 11 runners. In Monday night’s 7-1 loss, they left eight runners on base in the first three innings then never had another baserunner over the final six innings.

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