As I mentioned this morning, the Pirates are 10-8 in their last 18 games and that’s an improvement over the way they were playing before, but it’s still not good enough. They seem like maybe they’re on the verge of pushing things in the right direction right now, but that’s happened a couple times already this season and it seems like this is right when they drop three in a row and then have to spend a week digging back to the already-buried point that they were at before. They can’t really afford many (if any) more of these false starts, and this series against the Nats seems like as good a place as any to start a press forward. They’ve already taken the first game, now they need to find a way to get two of the next three.c
Charlie Morton starts for the Pirates tonight and he’s had an all-around frustrating year. He hasn’t really been bad and in some instances he’s been quite good, but he has a disaster inning seemingly every time out and he hasn’t been as good or as consistent as he was last year. In his last two starts, he followed an awful first inning up with 5-6 solid innings of work. It would be awfully nice to see him put together a strong start without that one terrible inning; even though he hasn’t been great, he certainly doesn’t deserve his 0-6 record right now.
Jordan Zimmermann starts for the Nats. He was quite good for them last year, but his last few starts have been uneven and he’s gotten hit hard a few times this year. First pitch tonight is at 7:05.