It took over a week, but the Pittsburgh Pirates finally got back into the win column.
The Pirates are on a path for their second consecutive 100+ loss season. So it was nice to see a big game out of Johan Oviedo and others to break an eight game losing streak.
Oviedo had arguably the best start of his young career, throwing seven shutout innings against the Chicago Cubs. Much like the Pirates, or recent foe the Cincinnati Reds, it wasn’t a very stout lineup, but it’s a step in the right direction. Oviedo threw 71% of his 82 pitches for strikes with his fastball and slider leading the way once again. He topped out at 98.4 MPH and threw the 23 hardest pitches in the game. Over his seven innings Oviedo allowed three hits on the evening while striking out seven. Most importantly, he didn’t issue a free pass.
The offense took an early lead in the game when Diego Castillo hit a sacrifice fly to right field with runners on second and third and one out. From there it was Cubs starter Wade Miley and Johan Oviedo trading zeros until the fifth inning.
Ben Gamel lead off the fifth with a walk when Greg Allen laid down a bunt, which is where things took a turn. Miley fielded the ball and tried going to second base when he errantly chucked it into center field. Miley was then shown holding his back and exited the game with discomfort. With a new pitcher in the game, Jason Delay popped out and then recently promoted Ji-Hwan Bae stepped to the plate and yanked a ball down the right field line for a two-run double and 3-0 lead. Jack Suwinski replaced Castillo with two on and two outs which paid dividends as Suwinski blasted his 18th HR of the season to dead center for a 6-0 lead.
That would end up being all the scoring in the game with Zach Thompson covering the final two innings after Oviedo left. Thompson allowed two hits, a walk, and struck out four batters while the Pirates won 6-0.
Another player of note was Rodolfo Castro going 2-for-4 with a double and RBI after going hitless in the previous two games.
Cubs @ Pirates
Time: 1:35 PM EST
Pirates Starter: Luis Ortiz (0-0, 0.84)
Cubs Starter: Adrian Sampson (2-5, 3.35)
Ortiz Notes: Luis Ortiz looked phenomenal in his previous start against the New York Yankees. Once again topping 100 MPH Ortiz held the Yankees to two runs — one earned — in five innings while striking out five batters. Most impressively is the fact that in two starts Ortiz hasn’t been barreled once in his two starts. It’s extremely small sample size but still a solid effort considering the offense he faced in New York.
— Pittsburgh Pirates (@Pirates) September 25, 2022
— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) September 25, 2022
Raised in Cranberry Twp, PA, Jeff attended Kent State University and worked in Cleveland and Pittsburgh, before moving to New Orleans in September of 2012. His background is as an Engineering Designer, but he has always had a near unhealthy passion for Pittsburgh sports. Hockey and Baseball are his 1A and 1B, combined with his mathematical background, it's led to Jeff's desire in diving into analytics. Jeff is known as Bucs'N'Pucks in the comments, and began writing for Pirates Prospects in 2022 after contributing so many useful bits of information in the comment section.