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Pirates Spring Game Recap: Cheng, Joe Homers Not Enough in Loss to Tigers



Connor Joe, Pittsburgh Pirates

Tsung-Che Cheng and Connor Joe each hit home runs, but the Pittsburgh Pirates were defeated 5-3 by the Detroit Tigers at LECOM Park on Wednesday.

Cheng’s two-run home run to center field in the bottom of the third broke a scoreless tie. Three batters later, Joe connected on a solo shot to left to give the Pirates a 3-0 lead.

Former Pirate Bligh Madris hit a solo home run off of Aroldis Chapman, who was making his spring debut, to get Detroit on the board. The Tigers (3-2) scored a pair of runs off of Josh Fleming in the seventh inning which evened the score at 3-3.

With the score tied 3-all in the eighth, Anthony Bemboom and Wenceel Perez each hit solo home runs off of Dauri Moreta to put them ahead by the final tally of 5-3.


  • Quinn Priester made his first start of the spring for the Pirates (1-4) and tossed a pair of perfect innings with one strikeout. He needed 19pitches to get through his outing.
  • Aroldis Chapman recorded strikeouts for all three outs in his lone inning of relief. In addition to allowing a home run, he also issued a walk.
  • Jared Jones threw 1.2 scoreless innings, giving him 2.2 scoreless frames on the spring. He didn’t allow a hit, walked two and struck out a pair.
  • Termarr Johnson went 1 for 1 with a double and a walk. He’s now 3 for 7 on the spring with two homers and a double and has reached base safely in his last four plate appearances.
  • Ji Hwan Bae drew a pair of walks in his two plate appearances. Jake Lamb doubled in his first at-bat of the afternoon and finished the game 1 for 2.


The Pittsburgh Pirates will travel to Sarasota to take on the Baltimore Orioles on Thursday. Last year’s top pick Paul Skenes will make his Grapefruit League debut. He will be opposed by former Cy Young winner Corbin Burnes. First pitch: 1:05 ET.

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