Pittsburgh overhauls lineup ahead of matchup with ‘top-scoring’ Texans

The Pittsburgh Pirates have made changes to their lineup ahead of their series against the major league’s top scoring offense, the Texas Rangers.메이저놀이터

Ahead of the first game of the three-game series against Texas at PNC Park in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, on April 23, the Pittsburgh team held defensive drills with the entire infield and pitching staff.

While it’s a daily practice in spring training, it’s not often that a team can put together a defensive workout that includes the entire pitching staff during the regular season.

The timing of the drill was good. Pittsburgh had just lost the series finale to the Arizona Diamondbacks the day before with a slew of defensive errors. Today, they face Texas, which has scored the most runs in the league with 297.

Manager Derek Shelton didn’t seem to read much into the timing, saying, “We were originally going to do it on the first day of this homestand, but it rained that day. So the coaches decided to do it today,” he said, explaining the reasoning behind the practice.

“It’s been planned since the last time we played Baltimore,” he said, adding that it wasn’t a response to the previous day’s defensive lapses.

He was wary of the Texans, though. “They’re a team that can hit. They have a lot of experienced hitters who can work the count. If you work the count well, you’re more likely to get a pitch. And when they do, they don’t miss. You can tell by the fact that they’re scoring a lot of runs.”

“They’ve got guys who can make an impact,” he said, referring to current batting leader Adolis Garcia. “It’s a classic, old-school American League lineup. They have guys who can do damage from the seventh through the ninth. We need to continue to throw good strikes,” he added.

“We were sloppy the other day. We didn’t capitalize on our chances and didn’t play a good game. But it’s a little bit of a cliché, but you have to know that when you wake up in the morning, there’s another game waiting for you,” he said, adding that he hoped his players would forget about the previous day’s disappointment and start fresh.

Pittsburgh’s lineup for the day was Andrew McCutchen (designated hitter), Brian Reynolds (left field), Zack Suwinski (center field), Carlos Santana (first base), Keebrian Hayes (third base), Tukupita Makano (shortstop), Conor Jo (right field), Bae Ji-Hwan (second base) and Austin Hedges (catcher). Luis Ortiz, who is 2-0 with a 5.63 ERA, will get the start.

Texas’ lineup is Marcus Simien (second base), Corey Seager (shortstop), Nathaniel Lowe (first base), Adolis Garcia (right field), Josh Young (third base), Jonah Heim (catcher), Robbie Grossman (left field), Josh Smith (designated hitter) and Leodis Taveras (center field). Dane Dunning, who is 4-0 with a 1.69 ERA, will take the mound.

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