Starling Marte won't be in the Pirates' starting lineup Monday night against the Braves after he was benched by Clint Hurdle for showing a lack of effort in a win over the Cubs one day earlier.
Marte failed to run out a ground ball in the third inning after tripping while exiting the batter's box, and he chose to not get into a rundown between third base and home after getting caught off the bag on a ground ball hit to first baseman Anthony Rizzo in the sixth inning. The center fielder's effort level was questioned by his manager and teammates, Hurdle said, and led to the decision to sit him with the Pirates hosting a fellow National League playoff contender.
"As you saw, earlier in the game he slipped and fell," Hurdle recalled. "He got up and I just talked to him about the effort to finish the play. I thought there could have been better effort to finish the play. So did the fans. It’s the first time I’ve heard the fans; he’s worked his way back into good graces with the fans after what he’s gone through, and they supported him. There was a disappointment from them yesterday. Yeah, for sure. I encouraged him to show effort."