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Pirates Preview: Braves in Town After Bucs’ Back-to-Back Bad Losses

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Andrew McCutchen, Pittsburgh Pirates

The Pittsburgh Pirates suffered a similar fate on Thursday afternoon against the San Francisco Giants as they did the night before.

The Pirates recorded a grand slam, built a large lead and received solid work from their starting pitcher but the bullpen blew the game late with the Pirates (23-28) falling 7-6 in the series finale.

Joey Bart hit the grand slam against his former team and rookie Paul Skenes held San Francisco to one run in six innings but the Giants rallied for five runs in the top of the eighth.

Things won’t get any easier for the Pirates, who now welcome the Atlanta Braves (29-18) to PNC Park for the start of a three-game series.

First pitch is scheduled for 6:40 ET and the game will be aired on SportsNet Pittsburgh.

Weather

Hot and sunny with temperatures over 80 degrees at the start of the game. Winds WNW at 5 mph.

The Pittsburgh Pirates Will Send Out LHP Bailey Falter (2-2, 3.53 ERA)

Falter is coming off of what very well could have been the best start of his career when he threw a career-high 7.2 innings and held the Cubs scoreless.

It marks back-to-back really strong starts for Falter after a pair of shaky ones against the A’s and Rockies, respectively.

Falter’s success this year has been a bright start for what has been a disappointing season for Pittsburgh. The left-hander has held opponents to a .203 batting average.

In three prior meetings with the Braves, Falter is 0-1 with an ERA of 8.10.

The Atlanta Braves Have Yet to Announce a Starter

Braves Hitters vs. Falter

  • Austin Riley: 2 for 7, one RBI, one strikeout
  • Marcell Ozuna: 3 for 6, one double, one RBI
  • Michael Harris II: 2 for 6, one double one home run, two RBIs
  • Matt Olson: 2 for 5, one home run, one RBI, one strikeout
  • Ronald Acuña Jr: 0 for 5, one walk, one strikeout
  • Travis d’Arnaud: 2 for 4, one double, one strikeout
  • Orlando Arcia: 2 for 3, one home run, one RBI, one walk, one strikeout
  • Jarred Kelenic: 2 for 3, one double, one home run, one RBI
  • Ozzie Albies: 1 for 3, one strikeout

Tidbits

  • The Pirates became the fourth team since 1900 to hit a grand slam in back-to-back games and lose both contests.
  • It was the seventh time since 1900 and the first since 2000 that the Pirates hit a grand slam in two-straight games.
  • Andrew McCutchen led off the bottom of the first inning with a homer, the 25th leadoff home run of his career. It also gave the Pirates their first time hitting a leadoff homer and a grand slam in the same game since 1987.

Links

Perrotto: One Pirates’ Hitter is Salvageable, Another is Not

Dan’s Daily: 2OT McHero, Bruins Rumors, NHL-Ready Penguins Prospects

The Pirates Have a Bullpen Problem Without an Obvious Solution

Another Bullpen Implosion Sinks Pirates in Rubber Match Against Giants

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