• Charlie Morton's first win of the season in his last start correlated with a spike in his velocity. Morton's fastball velocity had been down 1.5 mph from his 2013 rate until he touched 95 mph and averaged 92.5 mph with his sinker in his last start against the Washington Nationals. The Pirates hope Morton's velocity heats up with the weather.
• No starting pitcher in baseball throws a higher percentage of fastballs than Bartolo Colon, who throws a four-seam or two-seam fastball on a whopping 86 percent of his pitches. The Pirates are a strong fastball hitting team and could find some success against Colon, who has been hit around early this season. Colon, who once pitched for the Montreal Expos, has faced more than 11,000 batters in his career.
Jordy Mercer has gone hitless in four straight games and was held out of the lineup against a left-handed starter on Tuesday. Mercer is hitting .294 versus left-handed pitching this season and is a .362 hitter against left-handers for his career.
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