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Pirates Preview: Pérez Looks to Play Role of Stopper

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Martin Perez, Pittsburgh Pirates

The Pittsburgh Pirates (11-10) dropped their fifth game in a row after falling 4-2 to the Boston Red Sox (12-10) on Saturday evening at PNC Park.

Mitch Keller allowed four runs in six innings pitched and the Pirates’ offense continued to struggle. Red Sox starter Kutter Crawford held the Pirates to one run in six innings.

The Pirates will attempt to break out the bats and put an end to their skid with veteran lefty Martín Pérez on the mound.

First pitch is set for 1:35 ET and the game will be aired on SportsNet Pittsburgh.

Weather

Chilly with temperatures in the low 50s and sunny skies. Winds WNW at 10 mph.

The Pittsburgh Pirates Will Send Out LHP Martín Pérez (1-0, 2.55 ERA)

Pérez has been everything the Pirates could have hoped for through his first four starts to begin the year.

Pérez has been a stabilizing force in an overall strong Pirates’ rotation and has yet to allow more than three runs in a start.

The left-hander was on the mound against the New York Mets on Monday when their losing streak began. In that game, he allowed three runs in 5.2 innings pitched.

Pérez, who pitched for Boston from 2020-21, is 5-2 with a 4.28 ERA in 10 career appearances (nine starts) against his former team.

The Boston Red Sox Will Send Out RHP Josh Winckowski (1-1, 4.63 ERA)

This will be Winckowski’s first start of the year. His first seven appearances have all been out of the bullpen, pitching a total of 11.2 innings.

14 of Winckowski’s 15 appearances in his rookie season in 2022 were as a starting pitcher but the right-hander made only one start for Boston last season in 60 appearances.

He’s fared much better as a reliver in his career with a 3.31 ERA in 67 appearances out of the bullpen. As a starter, he has a 5.66 ERA in 15 starts.

One of his two prior appearances vs. Pittsburgh came as a starter. Combined between both outings, he’s 0-1 with a 7.88 ERA.

Red Sox Hitters vs. Pérez

  • Rafael Devers: 3 for 6, two doubles, one RBI
  • Rob Refsnyder: 0 for 3, one walk, one strikeout

Pirates Hitters vs. Winckowski

  • Bryan Reynolds: 3 for 3, two home runs, four RBIs
  • Andrew McCutchen: 1 for 2

Tidbits

  • After going 3 for 4 in Saturday’s loss, Bryan Reynolds is hitting .517 (15 for 29) in his career agaisnt the Red Sox. That’s his highest batting average against any team in the league.
  • Over their last four games, the Pirates have gone 3 for 28 (.107) with runners in scoring position.
  • Connor Joe homered in the eighth inning on Saturday giving the Pirates their first home run since last Sunday against the Phillies.

Links

Top 10 Pirates Prospects Update: How Are Young Bucs Performing in Early Going?

Pirates Prospect Watch: Ashcraft, Kennedy Enjoy Strong Starts

Pirates Not Yet Panicking Over Offensive Struggles (+)

Pirates’ Woes Continue; Losing Streak Hits 5 Games With Loss to Red Sox

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