Pittsburgh vs. San Diego, 9 April 2005
Oliver Perez looked as bad as his box score tonight - he threw hard but had all kinds of trouble throwing strikes, getting into a number of 3-1 counts even in a number of plate appearances that didn't end with walks. He didn't throw his breaking ball that much, and except for a couple of knee-bucklers in the fourth inning, it didn't snap nearly as much as it did in his best outings in 2004. Perez's outing could have looked much worse than it did, since the Padres hit a number of balls very hard that ended up dying in the outfield - this happens a lot in Petco Park.
Lloyd McClendon seems to be trying some different lineups in an attempt to produce offense - last night he started Rob Mackowiak at second, and tonight he benched Tike Redman, moving Jason Bay to center, Craig Wilson to right and Daryle Ward to first. The Pirates are having troubles on offense for three reasons: they've had the misfortune to start the season in a slump, they're a terrible offensive team, and Petco is a very difficult park in which to try to hit.