This past week, the Pittsburgh Pirates took one out of three games against both the New York Mets and the St. Louis Cardinals as they closed out a lengthy homestand at PNC Park.
The week included impressive performances from a number of young players, including Cal Mitchell, who hit .462 in four games on the week.
Though Mitchell fell just short of earning one of the three stars of the week, two rookies were joined by a Bucs’ starting pitcher in this week’s edition.
Here are the top three performers from last week in Pittsburgh.
Third Star: Jack Suwinski – .333/.391/.619, 7 for 21, two home runs, three RBIs, three runs, six games
Suwinski found his home run swing again, going deep twice in six games on the week. The two home runs gave the rookie outfielder 16 on the season, and his first two since being recalled from Triple-A Indianapolis at the end of last month.
His 16 home runs this season are second amongst all National League rookies, trailing only Braves’ outfielder Michael Harris (18).
Jack with a jack! pic.twitter.com/m6HQL0wj6C
— Pittsburgh Pirates (@Pirates) September 11, 2022
Second Star: Oneil Cruz – .423/.444/.808, 11 for 26, two doubles, one triple, two home runs, seven RBIs, six games
Full disclosure, Cruz’s numbers this week are good enough to cement him as the first start, so Cruz is unofficially “1-B” in this week’s rankings.
The rookie shortstop displayed his impressive skillset with a fantastic showing at the plate. Cruz hit for contact and for power and reached the Allegheny River for the first time of his career. Cruz’s six-game hitting streak came to a close on Sunday.
ONEIL CRUZ HIT THIS BALL INTO THE ALLEGHENY pic.twitter.com/W4og6C92Rj
— Pittsburgh Pirates (@Pirates) September 7, 2022
First Star: Mitch Keller – 1-0, 0.00 ERA, no runs, 13 innings, seven hits, five walks, eight strikeouts, two starts
The only thing preventing Cruz from being this week’s first start is two shutout starts from the emerging Keller.
Keller blanked the Mets across six innings earlier in the week before shutting out the Cardinals in seven frames on Sunday. The right-hander limited hitters to a .171 batting average and a .447 OPS.
Keller’s season ERA is has dropped to 4.01.
This week, the Pirates hit the road for a three-game series in Cincinnati before four games in Queens against the Mets.
Check back next week for the Pirates’ top three performers from the week ahead.