Friday's scouting report: Pirates at Dodgers
Josh Beckett, 34, seems to be authoring a turnaround after putting up ERAs of at least 4.65 in three of the past four seasons. His 91.5 mph average fastball velocity is the same as it's been the past two seasons, but his 23.3 percent strikeout rate is the highest it's been since 2008. Surgery to relieve thoracic outlet syndrome ended his season in May last year.
• Pirates reliever Jared Hughes has stranded all 12 of his inherited runners this season. Since the beginning of last year, Hughes has allowed only three of 29 inherited runners to score. This series is a homecoming for Hughes, a 2003 graduate of nearly Santa Margarita High who also pitched at Santa Clara University and Long Beach State.
Pirates RHP Gerrit Cole, who grew up in Southern California and pitched at UCLA, had about 30 friends and family members in the stands Thursday to watch him pitch at Dodger Stadium. It was his second outing in his hometown. Last year, Cole started against the Angels in Anaheim, Calif.