Random thoughts on the Pirates

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This and that about the Pirates and the NL postseason:

* Bryan Morris has a 6.14 ERA in September and a .344 BAA and was pretty bad the entire second half. But the fact he pitched the ninth inning yesterday is a strong indication he will be on the postseason roster as opposed to, say, Kyle Farnsworth, who had a 1.17 ERA and a .185 BAA in September. In fairness, counting his time with Tampa Bay, Farnsworth has a 5.73 post-All-Star Game ERA.

* The catcher who gets the start today, Tony Sanchez or John Buck, likely will be the backup on the postseason roster.

* Unless he pitches multiple innings Tuesday, Gerritt Cole should get the start in the second game of the NLDS -- if the Pirates advance.

* Johnny Cueto, who starts for the Reds Tuesday, has made two starts against the Pirates this season. In 12 1/3 innings, he has allowed one run, three hits and two walks while striking out nine. His ERA is 0.73, his WHIP 0.41. In 21 career appearances against the Pirates, all starts, Cueto is 13-4 with a 2.37 ERA and a 1.02 WHIP.

* Considering the caliber of starting pitching they've received lately, the Pirates have something close to a to a 50-50 chance of beating Atlanta or St.Louis in the postseason. Their chances against Los Angeles are not as good.

* Pirates September batting average/OPS: Andrew McCutchen: .318/.994; Travis Snider: .214/.910; Tony Sanchez: .278/.906; Andrew Lambo: .222/.889; Jordy Mercer: .311/.852; Gaby Sanchez: .313/.830; Marlon Byrd: .319/.825; Jose Tabata: .300/.824; Starling Marte: .259/.741; Neil Walker: .207/.734; Pedro Alvarez: .231/.719; Justin Morneau: .260/.681; Clint Barmes: .174/.465; Garrett Jones: .129/.447; Russell Martin: .127/.437; Josh Harrison: .063/.417; John Buck: .176/.353.

* Walker had the most September home runs with seven, followed by Alvarez and McCutchen with four. Alvarez led in RBIs 14, followed by Byrd 13, Walker and Tabata 12, McCutchen 10.

* September runs by NL playoff teams: St. Louis 5.12; Cincinnati 4.08; Los Angeles 3.88; Pirates 3.81. Atlanta 3.38.

* September ERA of NL playoff teams: St. Louis 2.81; Cincinnati 3.06; Atlanta 3.24; Los Angeles 3.69; Pirates 3.87.

* September records of NL playoff teams. St. Louis 18-8; Cincinnati 14-11; Pirates 14-12; Atlanta and Los Angeles 12-14.

* His contributions have been considerable, but Russell Martin has become an offensive liability. His batting line since the ASG: .207/.299/.352 - .651. In September: .127/.214/.222 - .436. With runners in scoring position, for the season, he's batting .192.

* Prime candidate to have a good postseason: Justin Morneau. He's due!



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