Francisco Liriano (8-6, 3.35 ERA) and Ryan Vogelsong (9-8, 3.93 ERA) are on the hill in the last of a four-game series between the Pittsburgh Pirates (72-48) and the San Francisco Giants (66-56) at PNC Park. The Pirates won the last game 3-2 and Pittsburgh leads the series 2-1. Action begins at 8:08 p.m. ET on Sunday, Aug. 23 and can be seen on ESPN.
Liriano pitched 7.0 innings in his most recent start, surrendering five runs, striking out five and walking three in a 9-8 defeat to the Diamondbacks. Andrew McCutchen (.295, 69 Rs, 18 HRs, 78 RBIs, 6 SBs) had another good game yesterday, going 2 for 4 with one run. Vogelsong went 6.0 innings, surrendering zero runs, striking out five and walking one in a 2-0 win over the Cardinals in his last outing. Brandon Belt (.275, 57 Rs, 17 HRs, 59 RBIs, 8 SBs) has been successful at the plate for the Giants, going 2 for 5 yesterday with one RBI.
Pittsburgh is a -175 favorite against San Francisco and the Over/Under (O/U) for this game is sitting at seven runs. The Pirates have recorded an overall money line of +1,545 and have shown high-level performance as a favorite this season with a record of 56-27. Pittsburgh is an impressive 3-1 as the favorite over its last 10 games.
In games where it is the underdog, San Francisco has a 30-27 record and an overall money line of +454. The Giants are tough outs for opponents, leading the NL with 9.6 hits per road game. The Giants allow 3.8 runs per game, but have improved upon those numbers in the past 10 games, allowing 2.8 runs per game during that span.
The Pirates lead the season series, 4-1. The Pirates have a 59-38 record against right-handed starting pitchers on the year, which is what they'll be facing when Vogelsong takes the mound. Liriano (LHP) will be on the hill against the Giants, who have a 17-11 record against left-handed starting pitchers.
Predictions: SU Winner - Pit, O/U - Over
The Giants lost their last game by a one-run margin. In games decided by one run, the Pirates are 26-15. The Giants are 15-17 in close games this season.
Pittsburgh has won 48% (24-26) of its games when leading after 7 innings. However, San Francisco has won 62% (30-18) of its games when taking a late lead.
Having scored zero runs in their last game, the Giants are going to have to up their game if they want to win this matchup. The Pirates have an 11-0 record in games where opponents scored that many runs.
When they outhit their opponents, the Giants are 58-9. The Pirates have a 51-6 record when outhitting opponents.
Ranking 13th in runs, Pittsburgh has earned 513 this season. San Francisco ranks ninth with 528 runs.
Ranking 21st, Pittsburgh is near the bottom of the league in walks, notching 320 this season. San Francisco ranks in the bottom half at 19th with 332.
The Pirates are 47-23 when they hit at least one home run. The Giants perform similarly when they hit one or more homers with a 44-23 record.