Major League Baseball
Preview
Colorado at Pittsburgh
When: 1:35 PM ET, Sunday, August 30, 2015
Where: PNC Park, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

The Pittsburgh Pirates are winners of 14 of their last 17 games and own the second-best record in baseball, though the only team above them happens to also reside in the National League Central. The Pirates will try to make it five straight victories when they host the lowly Colorado Rockies in the finale of a three-game series Sunday.

Pittsburgh pitching has allowed three or fewer earned runs in nine of its last 11 games, including the first two against the Rockies. The Pirates sit 3 1/2 games behind the St. Louis Cardinals in the Central but are enjoying a section of schedule that includes 16 of 19 against teams with losing records, which continues with 10 of 13 beginning Tuesday against NL Central bottom-dwellers Milwaukee and Cincinnati. The Rockies (51-76) own the fewest wins in the majors and are losers of 14 of their last 18 as they play out the string in a fifth straight losing season. Jorge De La Rosa will try to help Colorado avoid the sweep while Pittsburgh turns to right-hander Charlie Morton in Sunday’s finale.

TV: 1:35 p.m. ET, ROOT Rocky Mountain (Colorado), ROOT Pittsburgh

PITCHING MATCHUP: Rockies LH Jorge De La Rosa (7-6, 4.61 ERA) vs. Pirates RH Charlie Morton (8-5, 4.20)

De La Rosa had a string of four straight quality starts come to an end when he was knocked around for five runs on nine hits and four walks in a loss at Atlanta on Monday. The 34-year-old has issued 10 walks in 13 innings over his last two turns and has one win in his last nine. De La Rosa is facing Pittsburgh for the first time this season and owns a 4-3 career record with a 3.75 ERA in 14 games - 10 starts - against the Pirates.

Morton presided over one of Pittsburgh’s rare losses of late Tuesday, when he surrendered five runs (four earned) on eight hits in 5 1/3 innings at Atlanta. The New Jersey native struck out only three in that turn after punching out at least six in each of his previous four outings. Morton is 2-1 with a 3.62 ERA in six career starts against Colorado.

WALK-OFFS

1. The Pirates are 21-4 against NL West teams, including 13-2 at home.

2. Colorado 3B Nolan Arenado is 1-for-15 in his last four games.

3. Pittsburgh RHP Mark Melancon picked up his MLB-leading 43rd save Saturday but had a string of eight straight appearances without allowing an earned run come to an end.

PREDICTION: Pirates 7, Rockies 2
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away East Central West IL
Colorado 51-76 L2 27-36 24-40 16-18 14-13 18-31 3-14
Pittsburgh 79-49 W4 46-20 33-29 24-9 21-29 21-4 13-7
Last Meeting
Colorado Pittsburgh
Date Away Home Avg HR OPS Avg HR OPS
8/29/15 COL 3 PIT 4 .250 1 .631 .258 1 .698
Player Stats
Season Series
Batting Player Avg Hits OPS
Colorado N. Hundley .375 3 1.125
Pittsburgh A. McCutchen .571 4 1.196
Offense Player HR Runs RBI
Colorado N. Hundley 1 1 2
Pittsburgh A. Ramirez 2 3 5
Pitching ERA Avg K
Colorado 5.06 .215 11
Pittsburgh 3.00 .286 9
Season
Batting Player Avg Hits OPS
Colorado D. LeMahieu .310 141 .772
Pittsburgh A. McCutchen .305 138 .928
Offense Player HR Runs RBI
Colorado C. Gonzalez 31 69 72
Pittsburgh P. Alvarez 21 49 66
Pitching ERA Avg K
Colorado 5.15 .267 854
Pittsburgh 3.13 .261 1027