Mitch Keller threw eight shutout innings for the Pittsburgh Pirates (69-78) in their 2-0 win over the Washington Nationals on Thursday afternoon.
Jack Suwinski and Alfonso Rivas each connected on solo home runs to ensure Keller’s terrific outing did not go to waste.
After a series win, the Pirates will turn their focus to the New York Yankees (74-73) and ex-Bucco Gerrit Cole for the start of a three-game series on Friday night, which is Roberto Clemente Day.
First pitch is set for 6:35 ET and the game will be aired on AT&T SportsNet.
Temperatures for first pitch expected to be around 70 degrees with clear skies. Winds light and variable.
The Pittsburgh Pirates Will Send Out RHP Johan Oviedo (8-14, 4.34 ERA)
Oviedo got knocked around in his last start against the Atlanta Braves on Saturday. The right-hander allowed three runs on nine hits and lasted only 3.2 innings.
It marked back-to-back starts Oviedo failed to escape the fourth inning after tossing his first-career complete game shutout against the Kansas City Royals.
This will be Oviedo’s first time facing the Yankees. In interleague play in his career, Oviedo has had some success. In 12 appearances (11 starts) against the American League, Oviedo is 3-4 with a 3.55 ERA.
The New York Yankees Will Send Out RHP Gerrit Cole (13-4, 2.79 ERA)
Cole was the No. 1 overall pick of the Pirates back in 2011 and pitched in Pittsburgh from 2013-17.
With the Yankees this season, Cole has established himself as the Cy Young frontrunner in the American League with a terrific season.
Cole has already totaled an MLB-high 187.0 innings while leading the league in ERA, games started, WHIP and winning percentage.
Cole has faced his original team one other time. He held the Pirates to one run in 6.0 innings while with the Houston Astros in 2019. This will be his first time pitching as a visitor at PNC Park.
Yankees Hitters vs. Oviedo
Pirates Hitters vs. Cole
- Joshua Palacios: 0 for 2, two strikeouts
- With seven strikeouts on Thursday, Keller is now only two away from 200 on the season. His 198 strikeouts this year are the third-most by a Pirates’ right-hander in a single season in franchise history. Cole (202 Ks in 2015) trails only A.J. Burnett (209 in 2013).
- Friday is the 2023 Roberto Clemente Day, where Major League Baseball will celebrate the life and career of the Pirates’ Hall of Famer.
- In their last 52 games played, the Pittsburgh Pirates are 28-24.
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