Costly Errors Sink Pirates: (20-11)

5/3/23- By Craig W. Toth – @BucsBasement on Twitter

When the Pirates are playing a team of the Rays caliber, they don’t have to be perfect; although it would be nice. They simply have to avoid the types of mistakes that have plagued them over the past few seasons; especially when they seem to come in bunches, or during the most inopportune times.

In the bottom of the third, Mitch Keller got two quick outs before allowing a single to Yandy Diaz. At this point, it seemed as if this would be a harmless single; especially with how well Keller had been pitching. However, after another sharply hit single by Wander Franco-that could have at least been knocked down by Ji-hwan Bae, and was ultimately muffed by Miguel Andujar-it was first and third.

No harm, no foul right?

Not so fast.

As Rodolfo Castro went to field a fairly routine bouncing grounder off the bat of Harold Ramirez, he simply misplayed it; allowing the tying run to cross the plate.

And then-right one cue-Brandon Lowe would double, to give the Rays a 3-1 lead; when it still should/could have been 1-0 Pirates, headed to the top of the 4th.

Obviously, it’s frustrating to see this happen; however, it appears that there was was no one more frustrated in The Trop tonight than Derek Shelton as he emerged from the dugout; with Bae on first and Austin Hedges at the plate.

Clearly Shelton was aggravated with the umpiring crew from the previous night, which boiled over into today. And, at apparently the crew wasn’t happy with him, or his coaching staff.

From here things continued to go downhill, as Bae tried to make a play, before throwing the ball into right field.

Add in a couple of solo homers, and an RBI double, as the Pirates fell to the Rays by a score of 8 to 1.

News & Notes

  • Cutch has been a bit of a slump over the pasts couple of weeks. Across his last 57 plate appearances-prior to tonight-Cutch had a .196/.263/.412 slash line with a 74 wRC+. Which is why it was so nice to see him take one deep off Shane McClanahan in the 1st.
  • As well as Keller was pitching he didn’t deserve a the loss; especially with the pitching line of 5IP/5H/5R/1ER/1BB/8K.
  • Not sure how there won’t be any repercussions for an ump telling a manager, “F-you”. I mean with Major League Baseball anything is possible, but it’s hard to imagine getting away with this one.
  • Wander Franco is really good at baseball.
  • Along with poor fundamentals, the Pirates are also 0 for 17 with Runners In Scoring Position over the past two days.

The Pirates look to avoid the sweep in St. Petersburg tomorrow at 1:10 PM. For Pittsburgh Vince Velasquez (4-2/3.06 ERA/1.18 WHIP) takes the mound against Zach Eflin (3-0/3.00 ERA/1.14) for Tampa Bay.

Published by Craig W. Toth

Former Contributing Author at, Co-Host of the Bucs in the Basement Podcast and life-long/diehard Pittsburgh Pirates Fan!

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