Andrew McCutchen apologizes for lack of hustle that led to benching

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Rain canceled last night’s Pirates-Dodgers game, so Andrew McCutchen’s one-game benching for not hustling ends up being a zero-game suspension, as he’ll be back in Pittsburgh’s lineup tonight.

However, the Pirates center fielder still took the time to apologize publicly for his not running to first base on a third strike that got away from the catcher Wednesday, saying “I know that’s not the type of person I am.”

Here’s more of what McCutchen told Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com:

I let my emotions get the best of me. I took it out on my bat and myself when I shouldn’t have been mad. I was just frustrated at the time and not focused on the game, not focused that the ball was in the dirt with two strikes and I needed to run to first.

Clint Hurdle appears to have established a zero-tolerance policy on not hustling in his first season as Pirates manager, benching Ronny Cedeno last month and McCutchen yesterday. Treating a role-player like Cedeno the same as a star like McCutchen is crucial when taking that approach, and McCutchen seems fine with the benching.

Brandon Crawford homers off brother-in-law Gerrit Cole

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You can’t pick your family and no one knows that better than Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford. His sister Amy married Astros starter Gerrit Cole in November 2016, so the two players are brothers-in-law.

The two players have matched up against each other 18 times in the past, as Cole spent his first five seasons in the National League with the Pirates. Cole often won that battle, holding Crawford to four hits — all singles — in 18 plate appearances.

Crawford finally got the better of Cole on Tuesday night, hitting a line drive into the appropriately-named Crawford Boxes at Minute Maid Park for a two-run home run, cutting the Astros’ lead to 5-2.