I don’t know if anyone else noticed this, but the Pirates almost went the entire month of May without winning a series. That changed in the final days of the month, when they beat the San Francisco Giants in two of three games.
Since that series against the Giants, the Pirates swept the Cardinals, but lost to the Athletics. That series loss was a bit of a surprise when you consider the overall team record. When you consider their recent series success, the Athletics join the Rays, Blue Jays, Rockies, Orioles, Diamondbacks, Rangers, and Mariners as teams who have beaten the Pirates in a series over the last month-plus.
The Pirates go up against the Mets today in another series-deciding game. Mitch Keller takes the mound, looking to bounce back from his last three starts. In those outings, Keller has combined to give up 15 earned runs in 17.1 innings of work. The Pirates did win two of those games, thanks to a lot of run support. They couldn’t replicate that against Oakland this past week, when Keller gave up five runs in 5.1 innings in an 11-2 loss.
Despite the series trends, the Pirates remain in first place, one percentage point above the Milwaukee Brewers. The Pirates are currently the only team in the NL Central with a positive run differential.
PIRATES GAME PREVIEWS
PIRATES (33-30) VS METS
Game Time: 1:35 PM EST
Pirates Starter: Mitch Keller, RHP (7-2, 3.60)
Mets Starter: Carlos Carrasco, RHP (2-2, 5.94)
— Pittsburgh Pirates (@Pirates) June 11, 2023
Series finale starters. #LGM
— New York Mets (@Mets) June 11, 2023
INDIANAPOLIS (28-33) VS OMAHA
Game Time: 1:35 PM EST
Projected Starter: Cam Alldred, LHP (2-0, 3.58)
ALTOONA (29-25) AT RICHMOND
Game Time: 1:35 PM EST
Projected Starter: TBA
GREENSBORO (30-24) VS WILMINGTON
Game Time: 2:00 PM EST
Projected Starter: Anthony Solometo, LHP (2-3, 2.47)
6/4: Braxton Ashcraft Showing Velocity and Control in Return From Tommy John
6/2: Abrahan Gutierrez Hitting Ground Running Returning From Injury
5/26: Anthony Solometo Faces Two Top 100 Prospects In Greensboro
BRADENTON (30-26) VS DUNEDIN
Game Time: 12:00 PM EST
Projected Starter: TBA
FCL PIRATES (3-2) OFF
DSL PIRATES BLACK (1-4) OFF
DSL PIRATES GOLD (3-2) OFF
DAILY PIRATES NEWS
**I broke down the depth at every position for the 2023 Pirates, looking at what they’ve got left for the rest of the year. There are some positions where this team could get stronger, and other positions where they pose concerns. What I like from the article is that every spot on the team now grades league average or better.
**19-year-old pitcher Jun-Seok Shim made his pro debut yesterday, striking out eight batters across four perfect innings. Anthony Murphy looked at how he’s another boost to the growing pitching depth in the lower levels.
More Recent Pirates Features
Final Score: Pirates 2, Mets 1
Player of the Game: Mitch Keller, RHP (7.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 7 K, 1 HR)
Recap: Mitch Keller got his game back on track, and got the Pirates back to their winning ways as the Pirates beat the Mets on Sunday afternoon. Keller went seven innings, allowing just a lone run on a solo homer. The home run was one of two hits allowed on the day for Keller, who struck out seven and walked two.
The outing was exactly what the Pirates needed, with the offense being limited to two runs in the fourth inning. An inning after Keller gave up a leadoff homer, Jack Suwinski responded with his 13th homer of the year, tying the score at 1-1. The Pirates took the lead when Ji-Hwan Bae doubled, moved to third on a wild pitch, and scored on a single by Tucupita Marcano.
Keller wouldn’t need anything else, delivering one of his best performances of the year in a very close game. Keller had struggled in each of his last three starts, but got plenty of run support in two of those. Today, he picked up the offense, which managed eight hits and four walks, but left eight on base with a 1-for-6 line with runners in scoring position.
The big highlight on offense came with the first at-bat of the game, when Andrew McCutchen ripped a single to left field for his 2,000th MLB hit. I posted an interview with McCutchen from last month, following the hit.
Dauri Moreta came on to relieve Keller in the eighth inning, picking up a strikeout in a scoreless frame, with his only damage being a hit batter. David Bednar gave up a one out double in the ninth inning, but was able to close out the game and the win with no additional damage.
PIRATES PROSPECT WATCH
By John Dreker
Final Score: Canceled
Player of the Game: Mother Nature
Indianapolis and Omaha got started on Sunday, but they didn’t get out of the top of the first. Poor field conditions and inclement weather on the way wiped away the rest of the game. The contest has been canceled and won’t be made up on the schedule.
The league is playing a split schedule this year, with the first half ending on June 25th. These two teams don’t play again before then, so they won’t be able to play this game.
Final Score: Altoona 5, Richmond 4
Player of the Game: Abrahan Gutierrez 2-for-4, HR, 2 RBI
Altoona won 5-4 on Sunday afternoon in a ten-inning game. Starter Kyle Nicolas went four innings, allowing two runs on two hits and a walk. He now has a 4.36 ERA in 53.2 innings, with 63 strikeouts and a 1.47 WHIP.
Brad Case followed with a scoreless inning. He has allowed one earned run over his last 14 innings, dating back to his appearance on May 17th.
Noe Toribio threw a scoreless frame. Tyler Samaniego allowed two runs in his one inning. Travis MacGregor got the win with three shutout innings, which included five strikeouts. He has a 1.84 ERA in 34.1 innings, with 45 strikeouts.
The Curve got an RBI single from Mason Martin in the fourth. Liover Peguero had an RBI single in the eighth.
Abrahan Gutierrez hit a two-run homer in the ninth to tie the game. Claudio Finol gave the Curve a 5-4 lead in the top of the tenth on the sacrifice bunt, which turned out to be the winning run.
Gutierrez, Martin and Connor Scott each had two hits.
Final Score: Greensboro 6, Wilmington 3
Player of the Game: Anthony Solometo 4 IP, 5 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 7 SO
Greensboro capped off their week with a win on Sunday. Anthony Solometo had a bit of an odd game while throwing shutout ball. He didn’t walk/hit any batters, yet he ended up with 73 pitches over his four innings. He struck out seven batters. He has a 2.30 ERA, a 1.16 WHIP and 68 strikeouts in 58.2 innings.
Michell Miliano, Eddy Yean and Santiago Florez each allowed one run in limited work. Grant Ford tossed two scoreless.
Sammy Siani hit a two-run homer in the second inning, his sixth of the year. Shawn Ross hit a two-run homer in the eighth, his second homer.
Greensboro added two more runs in the eighth on a Will Matthiessen single and a wild pitch that scored Tsung-Che Cheng.
Cheng was the only player on Greensboro to reach base more than once. He had a single and two walks.
Final Score: Bradenton 9, Dunedin 8
Player of the Game: Nick Cimilo 2-for-3, 2B, HR, 3 RBI, BB, HBP
Bradenton was down 8-0 in this game going into the bottom of the sixth. They tied the game up, only to lose 9-8 in ten innings.
Starter Dominic Perachi gave up four runs in 3.2 innings. Sergio Umana followed with four runs in 2.1 innings, though all of them were unearned. Bradenton had three errors in the game.
Darvin Garcia tossed two scoreless innings while Bradenton was busy tying up the game. Joshua Loeschern took the loss, though his only run allowed in two innings was the free runner in extra innings.
The Marauders got an RBI double from Nick Cimillo in the sixth to make it 8-1. He reached base four times in the game.
They then went on a home run binge in the seventh. Alexander Mojica made it 8-2 with his fourth. Termarr Johnson hit a three-run homer for an 8-5 score. It was his third homer of the season. Cimillo hit his fourth homer to make it 8-7. Mojica then tied it with an RBI single.
Jesus Castillo walked three times. Johnson (1-for-4) and Jack Brannigan (0-for-4) each had two walks. Shalin Polanco had two hits and stole his seventh base.
Catcher Geovanny Planchart was the tying run in the tenth, but he got thrown out trying to steal third base.