Now Commenting On:

Fredi mixing and matching defenders vs. Bucs

Fredi mixing and matching defenders vs. Bucs play video for Fredi mixing and matching defenders vs. Bucs

PITTSBURGH -- Manager Fredi Gonzalez toyed with the idea of using Evan Gattis at first base on Thursday night while Gerald Laird handled his duties as Julio Teheran's primary catcher, but he instead opted to keep Gattis out of his starting lineup for the first time since April 6.

Gonzalez did not feel comfortable using Gattis as his first baseman in consecutive games, but he plans to give the rookie catcher his second career start at first base on Friday night, when Laird is scheduled to serve as the starting catcher in a second consecutive game for the first time this year.

Laird's opportunity to play on Friday night will come because of his previous success against the Pirates' scheduled starter, Wandy Rodriguez. Laird has four hits, including a double, in seven career at-bats against Rodriguez.

The Pirates started left-handers in the first two games of this four-game series, and Gonzalez did not want Juan Francisco's hot bat on the bench in two consecutive games. Thus he opted to give Francisco a chance to prove himself against a left-hander during Thursday's matchup against Jeff Locke, a former Braves prospect who was making his 13th career start.

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Boys and Girls Club of America

©2014 MLBAM, LP. All rights reserved.

The following are trademarks or service marks of Major League Baseball entities and may be used only with permission of Major League Baseball Properties, Inc. or the relevant Major League Baseball entity: Major League, Major League Baseball, MLB, the silhouetted batter logo, World Series, National League, American League, Division Series, League Championship Series, All-Star Game, and the names, nicknames, logos, uniform designs, color combinations, and slogans designating the Major League Baseball clubs and entities, and their respective mascots, events and exhibitions. Use of the Website signifies your agreement to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy (updated May 24, 2013).

View MLB.com in English | En Español