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Pirates Preview: Keller Has a Shot to Give Bucs Their First Series Win in May



Pittsburgh Pirates- Mitch Keller

The Pittsburgh Pirates (27-27), after an abysmal game one, bounced back with a vengeance Tuesday night as they beat the San Francisco Giants 2-1 (28-27).

Admittedly, Johan Oviedo struggled a lot in his outing against the Giants with five walks allowed, but he battled through his woes and got the Pirates through 4.1 innings of shutout ball.

The bullpen came through in the clutch to finish out the game, and the Pirates’ offense did just enough to squeak by and give themselves a shot to win their first series in May.

The first pitch at Oracle Park is scheduled for 3:45 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.


Temperatures are expected to be a little chilly at first pitch, with 61 degrees. The skies should open up throughout the game with sunny skies, and there will be double-digit winds blowing southwest throughout the contest.

The Pirates will send out their ace, RHP Mitch Keller (5-1, 3.01 ERA)

Despite giving up six earned runs in his last start on May 26 against the Seattle Mariners, Keller pitched a brilliant game. Most of that damage came in the fifth and seventh inning.

In his last start, Keller used four of his six pitches fairly evenly with a four-seam (25%), sweeper (20%), sinker (19%), and cutter (15%).

Keller kept the hard-hit balls to a minimum that game with an average exit velocity of 83.7 mph, with his sinker leading the way with just an average EV of 62.1 mph.

Keller has faced the Giants three times (three starts) and holds an 0-2 record with an ERA of 4.50 in 16 innings pitched.

The Giants will send out LHP Alex Wood (1-0, 3.51 ERA)

Wood had to battle in his last start on May 26 against the Milwaukee Brewers as he gave up five walks in 5.2 innings pitched. The rest of Wood’s line read three hits, one earned run and five strikeouts.

Wood went heavy on his sinker usage against the Brewers, as he used it 59% of the time and got a 40% CSW percentage with it as well.

In addition, Wood limited the hard-hit balls with an average exit velocity of 84.5 mph on 14 balls put into play.

Wood’s entire pitching arsenal reads a sinker (48.3%), a slider (31%), and a changeup (20.7%). Not a lot of tools in the shed for the 32-year-old starting pitcher.

Wood has faced the Pirates 14 times (13 starts) and holds a 6-3 record with an ERA of 3.23 in 78 innings pitched. As a little extra tidbit, Wood holds an ERA of 4.14 in 182.2 innings pitched in San Francisco.

Giants Hitters

  • Brandon Crawford: 3-6 with a double and a walk
  • Mike Yastrzemski: 0-5 with two strikeouts

Pirates Hitters

  • Ke’Bryan Hayes: 3-6 with two doubles and three strikeouts
  • Connor Joe: 5-12 with one homer and two walks
  • Bryan Reynolds: 5-12 with two doubles
  • Andrew McCutchen: 6-33 with a double, a homer, and ten strikeouts
  • Austin Hedges: 1-10


  • The Pirates are now 21-6 when scoring first after Joe’s first inning homer off of Brebbia on Tuesday night.
  • Duari Moreta has yet to allow an earned run in his last 12 appearances dating back to April 30 against the Washington Nationals.
  • Colin Holderman has yet to allow a run over his last nine outings dating back to April 29 against the Nationals. In addition, he has retired his last 18 right-handed batters in a row, which dates all the way back to April 25.


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