PITTSBURGH -- The Pirates have been outscored, 179 to 93, on the season and the pitching staff's ERA is 6.35, worst in the Majors. Despite those numbers, the Pirates enter play on Thursday night holding their own with a 12-15 record.
Pirates third baseman Andy LaRoche sees that as a positive.
"The pitching has already shown a lot of improvement," LaRoche opined. "As far as the hitting, we have been scuffling lately, but we're getting better, and guys are starting to feel more comfortable in the box, and that's going to keep improving.
"Defensively, we've been scuffling, so pretty much all three parts of the game there is room for improvement. There's a lot of work to be done and we're getting better and we are making strides. It's going to keep getting better."
"We went through a tough stretch," Pirates manager John Russell offered. "The pitching was in disarray and we were having trouble having quality starts and it was trying. I think the guys have fought back and put ourselves in a position to get out of it. We're still in a good position and we're still moving forward, and we weathered the storm and the next one that comes long we should be able to weather that one easier."