DODGERS (55-45, 30-21 away) @ PIRATES (52-46, 32-20 home)
LAD Hyun-Jin Ryu (10-5, 3.44 ERA) vs Edison Volquez (8-6, 3.65 ERA)
Was Neal Huntington right about Gregory Polanco after all? Huntington and the Pirates as a whole for months were blasted by the media, fans, for keeping Gregory Polanco in the minors because of believed financial reasons, though, the team always took the stance that he wasn’t ready and they took a lot of heat for it.
Did the Pirates bring Polanco up too early? That’s a question starting to be asked more predominantly as Polanco is hitting .162 since June 26, has looked over matched at the plate of late, especially against sliders, breaking balls, and his last extra base hit was July 2nd.
Polanco is hitting .143 (6-42) vs lefties and will sit tonight with the lefty Hyun-Jin Ryu taking the mound. Michael Martinez will start in right field.
Clint Hurdle during his pre-game scrum said the struggling Polanco, who is 0 for his last 11, is just getting a day off but the talk in Pirates circles is if Polanco’s still struggling 10-14 days from now, he could be destined for Triple-A to help tune up his game for a few weeks.
It’s something the Pirates internally are not ruling out for a player who only had 257 career at-bats in Triple-A prior to his promotion on June 10th.
The Pirates admitted at the time of Polanco’s callup (June 10) that Neal Walker’s injury accelerated the callup, something a month earlier Neal Huntington was saying the Pirates had to stay away from doing. “The worst thing we can do is promote someone because we need him, not because he is ready,” Huntington told MLB.com on May 9.
- Edison Volquez goes for his 9th win of the season and has posted a 0.90 ERA in his last four games.
- Neil Walker is hitting .359 in his last 10 games.
- Hanley Ramirez is not in the lineup tonight for the Dodgers due to injury. Neither is Yasiel Pug. The Pirates will avoid seeing pitchers Clayton Kershaw and Zack Grienke during the series.
1. Harrison, 3B
2. Marte, LF
3. McCutchen, CF
4. Sanchez, 1B
5. Walker, 2B
6. Martin, C
7. Mercer, SS
8. Martinez, RF
9. Volquez, P
1. Gordon, 2B
2. Turner, SS
3. Gonzalez, 1B
4. Kemp, RF
5. Ethier, CF
6. Crawford, LF
7. Uribe, 3B
8. Ellis, C
9. Ryu, LHP