Pirates Lose in Frustrating Fashion 4-1 to Rays: (20-10)

05/02/2023 – By Ethan Smith – @mvp_Ethan on Twitter

The Pittsburgh Pirates got a bit of their own medicine on Tuesday night against the MLB best Tampa Bay Rays, as aggressive base running and taking advantage of opportunities propelled the Rays to a 4-1 win over the Pirates in game one of this highly anticipated series.

Three scoreless innings kicked things off, but Harold Ramirez(former Pirates minor leaguer), would kick off the scoring in the bottom of the fourth with an RBI single to score Randy Arozerena on a hard hit ball past Rodolfo Castro. Ke’Bryan Hayes would cap off the fourth inning with a beautiful 360-spin out at third, showcasing why he earned Sports Info Solutions Best Defender in the month of April.

The fifth inning would come and Hayes fired a 113 mph shot right off Josh Fleming’s foot, this coming after Fleming’s impressive behind-the-back snag earlier in the game.

Fleming would be removed from the game, finishing with 3.1 IP, 2 H, 3 BB and 1 SO after coming in for opener Javy Guerra, who would only pitch 0.2 innings with two walks.

Bryan Reynolds would double, putting Hayes at third with no outs and putting the Pirates in business. Andrew McCutchen would strikeout, followed by a Carlos Santana fly ball to Jose Siri, who has one of the best arms in CF in baseball, and after a lengthy review to see if Hayes touched home plate, the call stood as safe as home, tying the game at one.

Wander Franco, following a costly miscommunication on a pop-up by Castro and Jack Suwinski, hit into a double play in his first two plate appearances but would regain the Rays lead in the bottom of the fifth on an RBI single. Siri and Franco would perfectly execute a first-and-third steal to add to the lead, making it 3-1.

The top of the sixth featured, well um, a lot. Austin Hedges was visibly upset after what appeared to be a clear balk with runners on second and third, ending with a Hedges strikeout and a Hayes strikeout on another questionable strike call, something that became a theme in this one.

Ramirez would homer in the bottom of the sixth, chasing Contreras, who would finish with 5.1 IP, 6 H, 4 ER, 4 BB and 3 SO. Dauri Moreta would clean up in the sixth, leaving the inning with a 4-1 Rays advantage.

Moreta would also close out the seventh to keep the deficit at three, struggling at times with the zone but working a double play to end the inning.

The final two innings were relatively quiet as Yohan Ramirez would keep the Pirates within three, but nothing materialized for the Pirates offensively resulting in the loss.

Mitch Keller is on the mound tomorrow to face Shane McClanahan.

News & Notes

  • Roansy Contreras final line: 5.1 IP, 6 H, 4 ER, 3 BB
  • Javy Guerra was an opener in this game for the Rays
  • Josh Fleming final line: 3.1 IP, 2 H, 0 ER ,3 BB, 1 SO

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