Previewing Thursday's Pirates-Cubs game
Pirates beat reporter Rob Biertempfel's inside look at Thursday's game:
• Last season, ex-Cubs RHP Carlos Marmol was removed from the closer's role after three outings. Jose Veras has held onto the job longer this year, but his grip is not firm. After a rocky spring training, Veras yielded three runs and six walks over his first three outings this season. There were groans among fans at Wrigley Field when Veras took the mound Tuesday, although he tossed a clean inning against the Pirates.
• Cubs SS Starlin Castro was moved up to the No. 2 spot in the lineup Wednesday against LHP Wandy Rodriguez, but the move probably is not permanent. In the previous three games, Castro, a righty batter, banged out seven hits while batting sixth, and he could go back to that spot Thursday against RHP Gerrit Cole.
Cubs OF Junior Lake, who has not yet started a game against a right-hander, told ESPN.com he's frustrated over his lack of playing time. “I don't see the difference, righty or lefty,” Lake said. “It doesn't matter.” Last year, Lake hit .377 vs. LHPs and .251 vs. RHPs.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
- Pirates notebook: Bucs set single-season attendance record
- Monday’s scouting report: Pirates at Braves
- Pirates find a bridge at end of baseball world in Holdzkom
- Pirates, Worley edge Brewers, 1-0, move to cusp of playoffs
- Rossi: The series that will define these Pirates
- Pirates notebook: Worley raring to go after skipping last start
- Pirates notebook: Morton scratched from Sunday’s start
- Sunday’s scouting report: Brewers at Pirates
- Pirates’ 5-game winning streak ends with 1-0 loss to Brewers
- Pirates notebook: Hurdle quiet on rotation plans
- Pirates notebook: Bucs batters seeing doubles