Pirates Open Second Half With Win 4-1 Over New York Mets

7-16-21 – By Gary Morgan

Electric feel to tonight’s contest.

Something felt chippy from the beginning in this one. Perhaps carry over from the four game set in New York that preceded the All Star Break to this quick three game home stand with what I’d project as at least 40% Mets fans.

Regardless of why, something was up.

In the bottom of the first, Adam Frazier lined one second and Lindor made a hell of a catch on an all out dive complete with a snow cone.

Now, after this great play Lindor was a bit animated with pointing at Frazier. I guess it could have been over the top, but Frazier seemed to laugh it off. I thought, meh, maybe I’m just feeling more emotion cause it’s been a little while since I’ve watched a competitive ball game.

Chad Kuhl had it going for a bit, having his way through two innings.

In the bottom of the second the Bucs would load the bases with one out the ground crew scrambled.

A quick delay later and we were back in the same spot, Pitcher up, 1 out, bases loaded. Kuhl struck out looking after making Stroman throw some pitches and Adam Frazier came through with a two run single.

Chad Kuhl came back from the quick rain delay and struggled to find his velocity or location. Walked a couple guys and Bryan Reynolds #OpenTheCheckbook made a fantastic diving catch in center field to help Kuhl escape the inning.

In the fourth inning, Chad was still struggling to find it but fighting through, when Kevin Newman committed his first error of the season. The Bucs couldn’t escape this one unscathed but Chad minimized the damage and finished with a scoreless 5th.

Really an encouraging outing for Kuhl. This looked much more like the Chad Kuhl we were hoping to see, something to build on.

After that, the Bucs just stacked on and Pitched.

First Difo.

Then Reynolds #OpenTheCheckbook

OK, so I glazed over something.

In between all this good stuff, Stroman gave up a sharp line drive to John Nogowski. Seemed harmless, good play. But something happened. Stroman got animated about it. John got mad. Stroman got more mad. and then…

Silly really. I certainly wouldn’t call it a brawl, but it was, well as I said, something.

Whatever it was, for some reason I think I understand what that energy I was feeling stemmed from. It was the chemistry on this club right now. It may wind up being nothing more than a flash in the pan, but John Nogowski, Ben Gamel and to a lesser degree Wilmer Difo have all brought a bit of loudness and attitude. This is a group of nice and relatively quiet guys, and personalities or spark plugs if you will like that can help a team like this start to learn some nights they need to strut back at the opponents. Some nights it’s ok to be as animated as your opposition.

Every once in a while that kind of stuff is needed in a clubhouse because it brings it out of the guys who aren’t usually the first to speak up or puff out the chest. They know where they are in the standings and what the organization is at least trying to do. Sometimes when you get in that spot it can be difficult to remember you’ve got talent too, strut.

Beautifully played ballgame tonight. Emotional, but well played.

Fun Stuff really.

Mets 1, Pirates 4, nice win.

Tomorrow the Bucs will go with Will Crowe and as of right now the Mets could go with Jacob deGrom or TBA. I guess we’ll see tomorrow.

News & Notes

  • Tonight ended Kevin Newman’s incredible season long errorless streak, heck of a run. He is to be commended for the fielder he’s become. Say what you will about the bat, but he is about as solid as it gets over there. Couple real nice gems to follow that up too.
  • This game had a charged feel from the jump, maybe it was all the lightning in the area. It almost wasn’t
  • Bryan Reynolds hit his 17th homerun tonight. Ladies and Gentlemen, Bryan Reynolds is more than we thought he could be. This isn’t a return to 2019, this is a man emerging into his full potential. This is a cornerstone. Open. The. Checkbook.

Published by Gary Morgan

Former contributor for Inside the Pirates an SI Team Channel

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