Garrett Jones! Garrett Jones and the Pirates' pitchers won this game pretty much by themselves. Jones homered off Tim Lincecum early in the game, then hit a walkoff jack into the Allegheny in the 14th. Paul Maholm had an excellent start, and if the Pirates' hitters didn't hit (literally, they didn't record a single hit for several innings after the seventh) or run the bases well (Brandon Moss was out by a mile on a bizarre decision by Tony Beasley early in the game, and he also got caught stealing before that), at least their relievers kept runs off the board. Even Matt Capps pitched pretty well. But... Garrett Jones! And did I mention Garrett Jones?
Of course it won't last, but that doesn't mean I won't enjoy this streak of ridiculous hitting while it lasts. It's especially nice that Jones is a thoughtful enough guy to do this while no one else in the lineup is hitting. The only other Pirates hitters who even managed to look good in this one were Freddy Sanchez, who went 2-for-5 with a double, and Andrew McCutchen, who went 0-for-6 but actually did manage to hit several balls hard.
A few clippings, which I actually made in about the seventh inning:
Minor League Baseball: Indianapolis vs. Pawtucket
Lastings Milledge is 3-for-3 with a walk for Indianapolis as I write this. It can't be long before the Pirates call him up.
Minor League Baseball: West Virginia vs. Rome
Now, before somebody makes some joke about a bunch of hillbillies getting trampled by centurions with javelins, keep in mind that I'm from West Virginia, that Rome is in Georgia, and that this is baseball we're talking about. Anyway, Quincy Latimore has gone 3-for-4 so far, raising his average on the season to .271. We've heard about Latimore only sparingly, but he was a toolsy early-round draft pick, and he's holding his own in a full-season at age 20. He also struggled in April but improved. I think it's fair to say he's at least a marginal prospect.
Minor League Baseball: GCL Pirates 4, GCL Yankees 2
Believe it or not, Mpho Ngoepe is hitting .381 in his first 42 pro at bats. I'm not sure what that means, but I know I'll be watching him pretty closely the rest of the season.
JIM SOUHAN: Twins won’t wade deep into the right-deal pool | Grand Forks Herald | Grand Forks, North Dakota
Jim Souhan (registration required) thinks the Twins won't trade for Freddy Sanchez because of the talent and money they'd have to sacrifice. I agree; in fact, I'd bet against the Twins trading for anyone this deadline season. They make few trades, they make even fewer splashy trades, the last splashy trade they made (the Matt Garza / Delmon Young debacle) blew up in their faces, and they don't have an unlimited budget.