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Team Report - PITTSBURGH PIRATES

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INSIDE PITCH

DENVER -- The Pittsburgh Pirates were routed 8-1 by the Colorado Rockies on Friday, not the way they wanted to start a long road trip. But since St. Louis, Milwaukee and Cincinnati also lost, the Pirates remained tied for second, 3 games behind in the tight National League Central.

The Pirates have flourished at PNC Park, where their 34-21 (.618) mark is the best home record in the National League.

Friday's loss was the first game on a 10-game swing through the National League West that will include three games at San Francisco and four at Arizona after this weekend series at Colorado.

The Pirates are 20-27 on the road, the worst road record of the four contending clubs in the NL Central. Cincinnati is 24-29 on the road, while St. Louis is 25-25 and Milwaukee is 29-21.

The NL West clubs are going to help the Pirates determine their short-term fate. The Pirates are 5-2 in a stretch of 16 straight games and 19 of 22 against NL West clubs through Aug. 10. The Pirates are 14-6 against the NL West this year, winning each of their first six series against Arizona (2-1), at Los Angles (3-1), at San Diego (2-1), against San Francisco (2-1), against Colorado (3-0) and against Los Angeles (2-1).

NOTES, QUOTES

RECORD: 54-48

STREAK: Lost one

NEXT: Pirates (LHP Jeff Locke, 2-1, 3.05 ERA) at Rockies (LHP Tyler Matzek, 1-4, 4.91 ERA)

PLAYER NOTES:

--RHP Charlie Morton held the Rockies to one run through six innings and another in the seventh before leaving after failing to retire the three batters he faced. The two runners Ernesto Frieri inherited from Morton also scored, and he was charged with four runs in six innings. Morton (5-10) had won four of his previous six decisions and had a 2.73 ERA (33 innings, 10 earned runs) in his past five starts. In five previous career starts against the Rockies, Morton was 2-0 with a 3.16 ERA (31 1/3 innings, 11 earned runs).

--2B Neil Walker went 1-for-3 with a walk and has reached base safely in 22 consecutive games, the longest active streak in the majors. Walker has 11 hits in his past 23 at-bats and has scored 17 runs this month. He ranks first among National League second baseman with 15 home runs.

--RHP Gerrit Cole (right lat soreness) threw a 60-pitch bullpen with Triple-A Indianapolis at Rochester and is scheduled to make an 80-pitch rehab start there Monday. Cole has been on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to July 5, his second stint on the disabled list this year. Right shoulder fatigue put Cole on the disabled list retroactive to June 4, and he wasn't activated until June 28. In 14 starts this season, Cole is 7-4 with a 3.78 ERA. He did not make a rehab start when he came off the disabled list following his shoulder fatigue and left his second start with back tightness.

--3B Pedro Alvarez, who left Tuesday's game with left knee discomfort, was not in the lineup for the second straight game but did pinch hit in the seventh against right-hander Tommy Kahnle and struck out and stayed in the game. Alvarez took ground balls before the game, did some agility drills and hit in the indoor batting cage and manager Clint Hurdle said Alvarez was healthy enough to come off the bench and hit.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "A hanging breaking ball for a double. An elevated sinker for another extra-base hit and they roll a ground ball through the left side, which chased Charlie." -- Pirates manager Clint Hurdle on RHP Charlie Morton after a loss at Colorado on Friday.

ROSTER REPORT

MEDICAL WATCH:

--3B Pedro Alvarez (left knee discomfort) left the July 22 game. He did not play July 23 but came on as a pinch hitter July 25 and stayed in the game.

--LF Starling Marte (concussion) went on the seven-day disabled list retroactive to July 22. He passed concussion protocols July 21 and was cleared to play but failed the tests July 23. There is no timetable for his return.

--RHP Gerrit Cole (tight right lat) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to July 5. He threw on flat ground July 13 and 15. He threw off a mound July 16 and 20. He threw 70 pitches in a simulated game July 23.

--INF Clint Barmes (strained left groin) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to June 30. He began jogging July 23 and is expected to take live practice during the week of July 28-Aug. 3.

ROTATION:

RHP Francisco Liriano

RHP Charlie Morton

LHP Jeff Locke

RHP Edinson Volquez

RHP Vance Worley

BULLPEN:

RHP Mark Melancon (closer)

LHP Tony Watson

RHP Ernesto Frieri

LHP Justin Wilson

RHP Jeanmar Gomez

RHP Jared Hughes

RHP Stolmy Pimentel

CATCHERS:

Russell Martin

Chris Stewart

INFIELDERS:

1B Ike Davis

2B Neil Walker

SS Jordy Mercer

3B Pedro Alvarez

INF Gaby Sanchez

INF Michael Martinez

INF Brent Morel

OUTFIELDERS:

LF Josh Harrison

CF Andrew McCutchen

RF Gregory Polanco

OF Travis Snider

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