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Pirates Preview: Can Oviedo & Bucs Maintain Momentum and Earn the Sweep?



Pittsburgh Pirates- Johan Oviedo

The Pittsburgh Pirates (20-8) go for the three-game sweep against the Washington Nationals (9-17) after the Bucs swept the doubleheader Saturday.

The Pirates won 6-3 in game one after Miguel Andujar belted a clutch two-run homer against Carl Edwards Jr, and then Pittsburgh exploded for 16 runs in game two and crushed the Nationals and Chad Kuhl 16-1.

The Pirates have now won 20 games, and it isn’t even May yet. In 2022, it took the Pirates until May 30 to register their 20th win; it is currently April 30.

First pitch is expected to be at 1:35 p.m. You can watch all of the action on AT&T Sportsnet, or listen to the game on the Pirates radio network, 93.7 The Fan.


It’s looking like another rough weather day in D.C. for the Pirates and Nationals Sunday afternoon. Rain is expected all day until about 8 p.m. Temperatures will range from 59-63 degrees and have a slight wind blowing northwest.

The Pirates will send out RHP Johan Oviedo (2-1, 3.03 ERA)

Oviedo had a bit of a rough outing in his last start on April 25 against the Los Angeles Dodgers. In 5.1 innings pitched, Oviedo gave up six hits, five runs (four earned), walked two, and struck out four on 94 pitches (65 strikes).

Although Oviedo used his slider more often (47%) against the Dodgers, his curveball had the swing-and-miss ability that game with six. His slider wasn’t far behind with five. In total, Oviedo induced 12 whiffs out of 50 swings.

Oviedo needs to continue to generate swing-and-miss stuff with his slider if he wants to get that four-seam where he wants it to be.

Oviedo has faced the Nationals once (no starts) and holds an 0-0 record with an ERA of 0.00 in one full-inning pitched.

The Nationals will send out RHP Josiah Gray (1-4, 2.93 ERA).

Other than his first start of the year, Gray has been the Nationals’ top pitcher.

In his four other starts (22.2 innings pitched), Gray has given up a combined five earned runs, 20 hits, eight walks, and struck out 21.

In his last start on April 25 against the New York Mets, Gray pitched six strong innings and gave up no earned runs, four hits, one walk, and struck out a season-high, nine.

Gray offers a four-pitch mix with a slider (31%), four-seam (29.7%), curveball (22.7%), and a cutter (15.6%). Gray has also been known to throw a changeup and sinker occasionally.

Gray has faced the Pirates once (one start) and holds a record of 0-0 with an ERA of 9.00 in five innings pitched.

Interesting Batting Match Ups

Nationals Hitters

  • Jeimer Candelario: 1-2 with one walk against Oviedo

Pirates Hitters

  • Bryan Reynolds: 1-2 with one homer and one walk against Gray.


  • Rich Hill became the first major league pitcher aged 43 or older to throw four straight games of 5+ innings and give up two or fewer earned runs since Bartolo Colon did it in 2016.
  • The Pirates have now stolen 39 total bases as a team in March/April. The last time a team stole 39 or more in that span was the Florida Marlins in 2003, when they stole 48.
  • Velasquez has now gone 18 straight innings without giving up a run.
  • Jack Suwinski had a career-high 5 RBIs in game two of the doubleheader. In addition, Suwinski matched a career-high three hits in a game; he’s done that five other times.


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