The Pirates look for a split against the Braves tonight in the fourth-game of the weirdly-scheduled four-game set with James McDonald and Mike Minor on the mound. Minor is a, awfully tough lefty, but he doesn’t have much of a platoon split and since Pedro Alvarez has been the Pirates’ best hitter for the last week or so, Clint Hurdle will leave him in the lineup to face Minor while stacking the righties in elsewhere (Yamaico Navarro is in left, Casey McGehee is at first).
McDonald’s last start against the Rockies was excellent but it was squandered by a lack of offense. That said, he didn’t quite command the strike zone the way you might expect in a dominating start (101 pitches, 53 strikes), and so I’m a little concerned that it was less of a step forward than we all might think.
First pitch tonight is at 7:10.