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Red Sox at Pirates lineups: Can Nick Pivetta keep it going?

He was good last year. Can he be better this year?

Baltimore Orioles Vs. Boston Red Sox At JetBlue Park
Let’s keep the good work up, Nicholas. I don’t even know if your name is Nicholas and don’t care to look it up.
Photo by Barry Chin/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

The B-team Red Sox face the always-a-B-team Pirates this afternoon in Florida behind Nick Pivetta (1:05 p.m., no local broadcast, but MLB.TV subscribers can watch the Pittsburgh broadcast).

Pivetta has been very good this spring, albeit over a handful of innings, as you can see from this tweet that I’m attaching so I don’t have to write out the stats myself:

So yes, we’ll take more of that more often, please. Pivetta was one of the last year’s overachievers and stands as a shining example of exactly what Chaim Bloom is trying to do with the pitching staff—throw stuff at the wall and see what works. Not only did Pivetta work out, he actually pitched better than his counting stats showed, per FanGraphs, so he might be due some positive regression, which would help a team that looks to be perpetually dealing with a Chris Sale injury from here on out.

The Pirates counter with Mitch Keller, a prized-prospect-turned Pirate, which means he was terrible last year... but, like Pivetta, put up better peripheral numbers than his counting stats indicate. In the lineup is the correctly (first) named Bryan Reynolds, who seems a lock to be traded this year to an MLB team, and Cole Tucker, who inexplicably dates Vanessa Hudgens.

The Sox don’t have anyone dating a movie star, as far as I know, in today’s lineup, but maybe Bobby Dalbec can change that someday? He’s at third, his natural position, while Kevin Plawecki is behind the dish and batting cleanup, which should tell you most of what you need to know.

Red Sox at Pirates preseason

Lineup spot Red Sox Pirates
Lineup spot Red Sox Pirates
1 Christan Arroyo, RF Daniel Vogelbach, DH
2 Travis Shaw, 1B Bryan Reynolds, CF
3 Bobby Dalbec, 3B Ben Gamel, RF
4 Kevin Plawecki, C Yoshi Tsutsugo, 1B
5 Christin Stewart, LF Greg Allen, LF
6 Rob Refsnyder, CF Hoy Park, 3B
7 Franchy Cordero, DH Cole Tucker, 2B
8 Yolmer Sánchez, 2B Roberto Pérez, C
9 Jonathan Araúz, SS Kevin Newman, SS
SP Nick Pivetta, RHP Mitch Keller, RHP