Coming off a four game series sweep at the hands of the Cincinnati Reds, the Pirates return to the friendly confines of PNC for a five game set against another division rival, the St. Louis Cardinals. Most of the time, at this point in the season, cellar dwellers like the Pirates are trying to play spoiler for teams that are still in the playoff hunt. However, as evidenced by the past few days, Pittsburgh has been more like a springboard as the launched the Reds into second place in the NL Central; good for 6th overall in NL Playoff Picture.
The Pirates entered tonight’s contest riding an eight game losing streak, with only twelve games to go in the truncated, yet somehow still very long and painful 2020 MLB season. Obviously having nothing to lose, would Pittsburgh put it all on the line or lay down and wait for the year to be over, while pretty much just going through the motions?
The answer to this question, at least for one day came from a very unexpected source. The 29 years young, Gregory Polanco doubled in the 2nd inning and hit a 3 run home run on a laser to right centerfield to get the Pirates on the board.
Steven Brault had a response of his own as he earned the third quality start for the Pirates on the season; allowing only one run on two hits in an unbelievable nine innings of work, while striking out eight Cardinals and walking only two for the first complete game of his career.,
The Pirates will look to make it two or three in a row tomorrow in a double header that starts at 4:05 EST with Trevor Williams (1-7, 6.35 ERA) and Chad Kuhl (1-2, 5.50 ERA) scheduled to start for Pittsburgh. But in all seriousness it is just nice to get a win after dropping eight in a row.
News and Notes:
- Brault absolutely stole the show tonight and saved a taxed bullpen after the last four games in three days.
- The back of the order (Polanco, Newman and Stallings) came through with a 5 for 11 night and 4 of the 5 RBIs.
- It isn’t all great news for the Pirates as Erik Gonzalez has only three hits over his last 26 at bats, which has dropped his average to .250 on the season.