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Pirates Preview: How Long of a Leash Does Contreras Have Friday Night?



Pittsburgh Pirates, Roansy Contreras

The Pittsburgh Pirates (28-27) return home to the friendly confines of PNC Park as they get ready for a three-game series with division rivals, the St. Louis Cardinals (25-32).

The Pirates finally broke through on the last possible date and won their first series in May after beating the Giants on Wednesday by a score of 9-4.

The bats finally broke loose against the Giants, and Mitch Keller pitched another good game.

The first pitch in Pittsburgh is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. You can watch all of the action on AT&T Sportsnet or listen to the game on the Pirates radio station, 93.7 The Fan.


It will be a scorching hot day in Pittsburgh at first pitch. Temperatures will range from 83-92 degrees, with sunny/partly cloudy skies. There should be a slight wind between 5-6 mph and blow northeast.

The Pirates will send out RHP Roansy Contreras (3-4, 4.33 ERA)

With the Vince Velasquez injury, the Pirates’ plan to place Contreras in the bullpen has been temporarily postponed.

Contreras did make one bullpen appearance on May 28 against the Seattle Mariners, and it was a fairly clean two innings of work, admittedly.

Contreras used a heavy dose of sliders in that appearance (64% usage), and that pitch averaged 91.2 mph in exit velocity on four balls put into play.

Contreras’ four-seam had more velocity behind it as well, with an average of 96.5 mph. His average for the year was 94.1 mph

Contreras has faced the Cardinals five times (four starts) and holds a 1-0 record with an ERA of 4.43 in 20.1 innings pitched.

The Cardinals will send out RHP Jack Flaherty (3-4, 4.81 ERA)

In two out of his last three starts, Flaherty has gone seven full innings, and in that time, he’s given up a combined one run.

During his last start, Flaherty faced the Cleveland Guardians and gave up seven hits, one earned run, one walk, and struck out four.

If you take out his atrocious start on May 4 against the Angels (ten earned runs), Flaherty has had a very solid month of May, with three out of his five starts going at least five innings, with three earned runs being the highest total in a single game.

Flaherty offers a four-pitch mix with the ability to throw six. Flaherty mainly throws a four-seam (39.8%), slider (25.2%), curveball (17.8%), and a cutter (11.6%).

In addition. Flaherty has thrown a changeup (4%) and a sinker (1.5%) on occasion.

Carinals Hitters

  • Jack Suwinski: 3-4 with a homer
  • Rodolfo Castro: 2-6 with a homer
  • Bryan Reynolds: 4-24 with a double, triple, and six strikeouts
  • Carlos Santana: 0-6 with three strikeouts.

Pirates Hitters

  • Brendan Donovan: 4-10 with two doubles
  • Paul Goldschmidt: 3-8 with two doubles and two walks


  • The Pirates, despite going 8-18 in May, currently stand just a 0.5 game back of the Milwaukee Brewers for first place in the N.L. Central.
  • With their win on Wednesday over the Giants, the Pirates are now 7-21 when their opponents score first.
  • The Pirates are currently ranked tenth in the majors with the least amount of strikeouts. Last year, the Pirates were 28th.


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