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Carmen Mlodzinski’s First Win Caps Off Strong Performance



Pittsburgh Pirates, Carmen Mlodzinski

PITTSBURGH — Perhaps lost in the shuffle in the Pittsburgh Pirates’ walk-off win over the Milwaukee Brewers on Friday night was Carmen Mlodzinski earning his first MLB win.

Mlodzinski was responsible for pitching the eighth and ninth innings — which he did flawlessly. The right-hander allowed one hit, walked one and struck out two. More importantly, he kept Milwaukee off the scoreboard.

The Pirates put together a ninth-inning rally, capped off by a Carlos Santana grand slam. The victory resulted in Mlodzinski being the pitcher of record.

It was obviously awesome to celebrate that after that after, but all the credit to Santana there,” Mlodzinski said. Hitting that two-run homer to seal it was really cool to see that.”

The win was well-earned for the rookie right-hander, who not only pitched well on Friday, but has pitched well since his promotion to the big leagues.

In seven appearances now, Mlodzinski owns a 3.24 ERA with two walks and seven strikeouts in 8.1 innings while limiting opponents to a .226 batting average against.

Mlodzinski has found himself in a brand-new role this season. Primarily a starter for his professional career, the Pirates shifted him to a full-time bullpen role this season, and Mlodzinski has looked good.

In addition to a role change, Mlodzinski himself has made adjsutemnts that have paid dividends for him this season.

“I think just utilizing all of my weapons to both sides of the plate. I came in with a new breaking ball this year. I think there was a big focus in Triple-A in making sure that I’m throwing that and getting a certain volume of reps just to make sure I’m getting that consistency and feel with it.

“But I’ve certainly made some adjustments with using the total package that I have against both sides of the plate which I think is gonna help me in the long run as well.”

Mlodzinski’s performance this season has perhaps been overshadowed by some fellow rookies in Henry Davis and Nick Gonzales — two former high draft picks that have landed everyday roles in Pittsburgh.

But, what Mlodzinski has done so far with the Pirates has been important. The Pirates’ bullpen has been depleted a bit of late with injuries.

The 24-year-old has been a reliable arm that manager Derek Shelton has been able to count on.

As a team, the Pirates have shown their resiliency of late and Mlodzinski believes his team is capable of doing some big things.

“I think especially going after that skid of losing a row, and then you start winning a few in a row,” he said. “And I think that just shows that everybody in here has not only the mental confidence, but the mental consistency to win major league baseball games every day.

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