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Pirates Report, 5/11/00

Thursday, May 11, 2000

NOTEBOOK

Today's game: Mets at Pirates, 7:05 p.m., Three Rivers Stadium. TV: Fox Sports Net. Radio: KDKA-AM (1020) and the Pirates Radio Network. Jimmy Anderson (1-0) faces the Mets' Al Leiter (3-0).

Cordova's condition improves: Francisco Cordova's chances of starting against Milwaukee Saturday night have improved greatly. Cordova, who has inflammation in his right elbow, had a cortisone shot Tuesday. "The inflammation was greatly reduced [yesterday]," trainer Kent Biggerstaff said. Cordova also had an X-ray yesterday. "It was very, very, very good," Manager Gene Lamont said. "I think he's going to pitch [Saturday night]." Cordova was scheduled to throw on the side yesterday, but because of the cortisone shot he'll throw today instead.

Anderson gets a start: Left-hander Jimmy Anderson makes just his second start since April 26 tonight. In Chicago last Saturday, he pitched five innings, getting 12 outs on ground balls and three more on strikeouts. Most of the eight hits he yielded were ground balls. "I actually felt pretty good," Anderson said. "I was worried about keeping the ball down, but I kept us in the game. I couldn't really get that easy inning. The ground balls kept going through the holes." The Mets are 4-4 when they face a left-handed starter.

Silva struggling to get over the top: The Pirates think they know what's wrong with Jose Silva. It's just a matter of getting it corrected. In his past nine games, prior to last night, the right-hander allowed 25 hits, including five home runs, and 12 earned runs in 13 innings. Last week in St. Louis, Silva, pitching coach Pete Vuckovich and bullpen coach Spin Williams spent perhaps 20 minutes watching videotape together. They focused on Silva's arm angle. The belief is that Silva is better when he throws from a three-quarter angle rather than from straight over the top. Silva warms up using the three-quarter motion. "But when he gets in competition, he reverts to what's natural for him," Williams said, referring to the over-the-top delivery. "With that, he's showing the hitter the ball way too early. We're trying to give him some deception. And we think he'll have more movement [on his pitches] from the three-quarter [delivery]."

Quick hits: Brad Clontz, who spent the end of April with the Pirates, is scheduled to have surgery on his right elbow next Wednesday in Birmingham, Ala. Dr. James Andrews will perform the arthroscopic procedure. ... Chad Hermansen is just 4 for 28 against left-handers. ... Entering last night's game, the Pirates had come from behind to get eight of their 14 wins. "It's good to show you can come back," Lamont said, "but we have too many come-from-behind wins. You really don't want to have to do it all the time."... Through Tuesday night's games, Pirates starting pitchers had the third-best earned run average (4.19) in the National League behind Atlanta (3.21) and Arizona (4.11).

MINOR-LEAGUE REPORT

Tuesday's results
NASHVILLE (15-17) lost at Calgary, 4-2, Tuesday. Starter Chris Peters (1-2) allowed four hits, two walks and two earned runs in three innings. Second baseman John Wehner hit his first home run. First baseman Brent Brede had two doubles.

ALTOONA (12-19) lost to Akron, 6-2. Starter Kevin Pickford (0-3) allowed six hits, a walk and three earned runs in 31/3 innings. Brad Guy pitched 42/3 innings of scoreless relief. Left fielder Adam Hyzdu hit his sixth home run. Third baseman Kevin Haverbusch had two hits.

LYNCHBURG (14-18) lost to Potomac, 10-6. Starter Wilson Guzman (2-2) allowed nine hits, three walks and four earned runs in 42/3 innings. Right fielder J.J. Davis hit a two-run home run, his fifth. Catcher Lee Evans and first baseman Tracy Sanders hit their fifth and first home runs, respectively.

HICKORY (21-12) won at Charleston, 5-1. Starter David Williams (5-2) allowed three hits, no walks and a run and struck out eight in seven innings. Jose Lopez struck out five in his two innings of relief. Center fielder Tony Alvarez had two hits and two RBIs. Right fielder Jovanny Sosa had two hits.



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