STATE COLLEGE, Pa. -- Pirates hitters need to shoulder just as much of the blame for the team's post All-Star break malaise as the club's pitching.
Since resuming play after the Mid-Summer Classic, the club's lineup has produced just four runs per game, good for 27th in all of baseball. Their 82 extra base hits during that same time yields a ranking of 28th, and their soft contact rate of 19.5 percent rates as the second highest in the majors. That's bad.
Sure, the lineup has shown the ability to pop off for a solid number of runs -- last night's 10-2 win as a shining example -- but the run production is sputtering at best, having been held to four runs or fewer in 18 of the 28 games since the break, three runs or fewer in 16 contests.