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Dillon Peters Shows Intestinal Fortitude as the Pirates Win 5-4 Over Cardinals

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After a good outing for Dillon Peters back on 8/15, where he went 4.2 innings, gave up five hits, and only one earned run, Peters toed the rubber against the St. Louis Cardinals on Saturday. This would make Peters first ever game in Busch Stadium. 

Peters was cruising through the first two innings. The rookie managed to get the first two outs of the inning but then after a walk to Tommy Edman, followed by a double from Goldshmidt; it seemed like Peters would crumble. But he composed himself and struck out Arenado to prevent the avalanche. 

Peters showed incredible poise tonight despite giving up some hard-hit balls. By exit velocity numbers, there were nine different occasions that Peters gave up hard contact. Still, thanks to good defensive positioning and timely defense, Peters continued on through four strong innings at that point. 

Peters would go one more inning, and he finished a very strong game on the right foot. Peters’ final line read 5.0 innings, 3 hits, 1 earned run, 1 walk, and three strikeouts.

The bullpen did their job for the most part, and we even saw Pittsburgh native David Bednar earn his first career save in a 5-4 victory. The Pirates will look to sweep the Cardinals tomorrow afternoon with Steven Brault on the bump.

Through the first four innings of this game, the offense had a lead-off hit; two out of the four were solo home runs from Kevin Newman and Yoshi Tsutsugo. The Pirates finally got to J.A. Happ, it seemed, and it was a refreshing sight to see.

Through Happ’s six innings of work, the Pirates bats amassed a total of six hits and drove Happ’s pitch count north of 90 pitches. The Pirates had nine hard-hit balls off of Happ, and Bryan Reynolds had the highest exit velocity with 108.3.     

The 7th inning proved to be the ultimate factor in the game for the Pirates bats. With two singles between Kevin Newman and Ben Gamel and smart base running, it set the table for Ke’Bryan Hayes to get his first hit of the night, making it a 4-3 game. Tsutsugo doubled the lead with an RBI single to make it 5-3

Stat of the Day

Bryan Reynolds at Busch Stadium has accumulated 20 hits in 80 at-bats. The only other parks he has more in are PNC Park at 154 and Miller park at 23. Bryan Reynolds’s career slash line at Busch is .250/.326/.338 and an OPS of a shockingly low .663. 

Moments that Mattered

  • Kevin Newman solo home run. His first since the 4th of July. 
  • Peters didn’t crumble in the 3rd inning and kept the game tied.
  • Yoshi Tsutsugo hit his second homer as a Pirate in as many days.
  • Newman and Gamel with smart baserunning to set up a Hayes go-ahead single making it 4-3
  • Yoshi delivers again with an RBI single to make it a 5-3 Pirates lead

Takeaways

Peters earned another start: In two consecutive starts, Dillon Peters has shown great promise and a poise that this Pirates rotation definitely needs as the final stretch of the season is near.  

Yoshi Power?: In two consecutive days, Yoshi Tsutsugo has hit a home run. Tsutsugo was known for his power coming over from Japan; the main issue was his strikeout numbers. This is by no means exclaiming Tsutsugo is the future, but if he can produce for power consistently and reduce the strikeouts, he may provide a good stop-gap before the prospect wave hits the majors.

Lead-off Ben: Coming into this game, Ben Gamel had just six hits in the lead-off role. Tonight Gamel set the table a lot tonight and went 3-4, with a double, two singles, and a walk. 

Young Hayes: After struggling mightily today and even striking out twice, Hayes delivered in the clutch to retake the lead. A tremendous confidence booster for Hayes, and it indeed shows he has a short memory and lives in the moment.  

Chad Kuhl from the Pen?!: Although Kuhl loaded the bases on Saturday and gave up a run, Kuhl seemed a lot more comfortable on the mound. He stood tall and even struck out the last two batters two preserve the 5-4 lead. A lot of chatter has been to move Kuhl to the pen, and one would wonder if that’s his permanent home the rest of the year. 

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