Contreras Strong Start, Hot First Inning Propel Pirates 4-3 Over Reds: (13-7)

04/20/23 – By Ethan Smith – @mvp_Ethan on Twitter

What do myself and the Pittsburgh Steelers have in common? We have both six.

Pittsburgh continued the good vibes against the Reds, winning 4-3 on Thursday night and extending their win streak to four games and bringing the season series even against their NL Central rivals.

The Pirates once again kicked off the scoring in the first, something that has become a trend as of late, with Connor Joe launching a three-run home run and Jack Suwinski hitting his fourth homer in four games to give Pittsburgh an early 4-0 advantage.

Roansy Contreras continued the Pirates streak of six-plus innings pitched to 10, their most in a row since August 3rd through August 12th of 2017, finishing with 6.2 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 8 SO, 2 BB. His ERA dropped to 4.57 after being above 8.00 before Thursday’s game.

His counterpart, Luke Weaver, making his season debut, managed to go deep after a tough first inning, finishing with 6.0 IP, 4 H, 4 ER, 8 SO, 2 BB.

After the first inning, things slowed down offensively, with the Reds adding a run in the top of the seventh from Jason Vosler that chased Contreras.

The top of the eighth would come for Colin Holderman, and although he would give up two earned runs, he struck out Tyler Stephenson to strand a runner at third to retain a 4-3 Pirates lead.

David Bednar would enter in the ninth, picking up his sixth save in seven opportunities.

The Pirates move to 13-7 on the season, picking up their fourth straight victory.

Game two of the series will feature Mitch Keller vs Graham Ashcraft on Friday evening.

News & Notes

  • New members of the Pittsburgh Pirates Hall of Fame were announced pregame: Kent Tekulve, Dick Groat, Elroy Face and Bob Friend headlined the 2023 group of Pirates Hall of Famers
  • Roansy Contreras final line: 6.2 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 8 SO, 2 BB
  • Luke Weaver final line: 6.0 IP, 4 H, 4 ER, 8 SO, 2 BB
  • Contreras continued streak of quality starts to 10

One thought on “Contreras Strong Start, Hot First Inning Propel Pirates 4-3 Over Reds: (13-7)

  1. Sufficient is the word that comes to mind for this one. Sometimes that’s enough. Sometimes the other team exceeds sufficiency. This one was enough to hang on.

    Contreras looked like he was losing some command late in his outing. Nothing alarming or uncommon among pitchers, just something to fine-tune in his maturation.

    I didn’t feel like Holderman looked particularly bad, albeit I would say kind of flat, for lack of a better word. It felt more like the Reds putting good swings together in succession, just happens in baseball.

    To state the obvious, even with giving the Reds pitchers and defense due credit, no hits after the second inning and only one baserunner after the third inning make a recipe for disaster. That just can’t happen. Maybe it’s nothing; maybe they need reined in from the Rocky Mountain high for an adjusted approach.

    Here’s hoping for another good Keller start, just with a better finish.

    Why is the start time 6:35 now through the end of May? What are they doing to our established rhythms and routines? I looked at the clock at game’s end and rubbed my eyes to check whether I was really reading it right! X-D


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