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Charlie Morton Implodes Again

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As much as I'd love to chalk up Charlie Morton's troubles this season to bad luck (and when I see something like Alcides Escobar lunging at a pitch way out of the zone and doubling down the line, or a grounder to third that turns into an infield single, or the dubious defense Morton had behind him all night, I tend to start thinking that way), he was a mess, walking the opposing pitcher, throwing a wild pitch, and needing about eight trillion pitches to get through the first inning. He'll stay in the rotation now, though, because his upside is high and because the Pirates don't really have anyone better. The only positives here were the three-hit performance by Andrew McCutchen and the fact that the bullpen managed to get through the eight meaningless innings after the first one without much of a problem.

A couple of notes:

Pirates Notebook: Hanrahan shoulders the load

The Pirates are "stretching out" Hayden Penn at Indianapolis with the intention of having him start. This seems like a curious move, since he looks like a bit of a Hail Mary even as a reliever.

Scoreboard | Indianapolis 9, Columbus 4  

Steve Pearce continues to destroy the ball at AAA, hitting a single and two doubles as Donnie Veal and Indianapolis beat Columbus.

Scoreboard | Bradenton 9, Jupiter 6    

The Marauders offense is just unstoppable. Starling Marte hit three doubles, Quincy Latimore continued an amazing start to his season with a  double and a grand slam, and Bryan Morris had his third straight good outing.