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Zach Thompson Dazzles; Pirates Beat Reds 3-1, Force a Split Opportunity

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Jack Suwinski hit into a fielder’s choice in the bottom of the second inning, bringing Rodolfo Castro up to the plate. Castro delivered a two-out single, placing runners on the corners. What happened next was a tad crazy.

Reds’ pitcher Luis Castillo was called for a balk with Diego Castillo at the plate, scoring Suwinski, giving the Pirates a 1-0 lead. Castillo then delivered a hard-hit single to left field, scoring Castro from second base. The Pirates extended their lead 2-0. 

The second inning proved to be enough for the Pirates as David Bednar shut the door in the ninth inning beating the Reds 3-1. The Pirates will now go for a series split Sunday afternoon with Jose Quintana on the mound.

Zach Thompson has had two-straight dominant outings. Although Thompson walked three Saturday night, he went 5.2 innings of no-hit ball. Brandon Drury played spoiler for Thompson in the sixth inning with a hard-hit single to right field breaking up potential history. 

Thompson has now gone 12 straight innings without giving up a run. This run started on May 4th in Detroit, where he pitched one inning. Thompson has allowed just four hits to go along with his 12 straight innings of shutout ball. 

Thompson’s final line read six innings pitched, one hit, zero earned runs, three walks, and three strikeouts.

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The Reds cut the lead to 3-1 after an Albert Almora Jr. opposite-field single, scoring Mike Moustakas in the seventh inning off Wil Crowe. 

Daniel Vogelbach hammered a solo home run to dead center in the bottom of the fourth inning, nearly hitting the batter’s eye. That 433 ft homer gave the Pirates a 3-0 lead.  

Takeaways 

Thom Terrific- Thompson may have had an extremely rough go of things early in the season, but lately, he has been locked in. Thompson has kept hitters on their toes by using the cutter as his primary pitch and locating it well. On a pitching staff that needs help tremendously, Thomspon has been a breath of fresh air as of late.

Vogelbam!- Put aside the Emeril image in your head for a moment and admit that Vogelbach has been an extremely effective addition in the off-season. It’s still way too early, but Vogelbach is quickly becoming one of the top designated hitters in the National League. 

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