JT Brubaker followed up his seven scoreless innings in his last start by holding the Atlanta Braves to no runs and one hit through four innings.
Michael Chavis hit his 13th homerun of the season in the second inning against Atlanta starter Max Fried to give the Pittsburgh Pirates an initial 1-0 lead.
Unfortunately just as the Braves offense did to Roansy Contreras the night before, they finally broke through in the fifth inning but this time for much more. Six straight batters reached base safely to start the fifth inning before Brubaker could record his first out. At that point the Braves had taken a 3-1 lead and by the time Brubaker was able to work his way through the inning Atlanta had built a 5-1 lead.
The Braves would add another run in the sixth inning on a two-out single by Austin Riley against Chase De Jong who had just replaced Brubaker. The RBI single given up by De Jong to score an inherited runner would be the only hit against him as he finished the final 2.1 innings without allowing another baserunner and striking out four.
In total Brubaker was able to throw 6.2 innings allowing nine hits, one walk, six earned runs and struck out eight batters. reaching a career high of 127 IP in a MLB season.
Aside from the Chavis HR the Pirates offense was only able to collect two more hits — Ben Gamel and Jason Delay each singled — and a walk by Rodolfo Castro.
With Mitch Keller on the mound for the day game, I wanted to turn this piece into a discussion about how development isn’t linear, rather than just another dragging-on recap about a bad offense.
The opposing pitcher for the Atlanta Braves will be Kyle Wright. Kyle Wright was a 5th overall pick by the Braves in 2017 out of Vanderbilt University (which now that I think about it, Bryan Reynolds should welcome his friend with a couple river shots).
I have mentioned in the threads on a couple of occasions how the Braves once had a stable of young pitchers who were all finding themselves atop prospect lists: Bryse Wilson, Touki Toussaint, Aaron Blair, Sean Newcomb, Kolby Allard, Max Fried, Mike Soroka, and Kyle Wright.
I could probably keep going but every single one of these pitchers was at one point or another on a Top 100 list within the last five years. They have each seen various degrees of success, failures, or injuries.
Mitch Keller is six months Wright’s junior. Much like Keller, Wright had struggled mightily until this season. Kyle Wright debuted in 2018 about a month shy of his 23rd birthday. From that time up until the 2022 season he had amassed only 70 total innings with a 6.56 ERA, 6.56 FIP, and 5.73 xFIP. Which was good for -0.9 fWAR or -0.5 bWAR.
So, we’re angry because we don’t have our own Vaughn Grissom or Michael Harris II. But Mitch Keller much like Kyle Wright is an example of someone that was held on to just long enough to maybe be finally figuring it out.
Braves @ Pirates
Time: 12:35 PM EST
Pirates Starter: Mitch Keller (4-9, 4.49)
Braves Starter: Kyle Wright (15-5, 3.14)
Keller Notes: Mitch Keller with be returning to the mound after a very abbreviated start in his last appearance. Keller was only able to throw two innings previously when he was pulled from the game after showing a dip in velocity due to shoulder fatigue. Mike Persak mentioned on Twitter that he spoke with Keller who said his velocity was back in normal range during bullpen sessions.
— Pittsburgh Pirates (@Pirates) August 24, 2022
1. R. Acuna (R) RF
2. Dansby Swanson (R) SS
3. Austin Riley (R) 3B
4. Matt Olson (L) 1B
5. W. Contreras (R) C
6. Eddie Rosario (L) DH
7. Vaughn Grissom (R) 2B
8. Michael Harris II (L) CF
9. R. Grossman (S) LF