Game 71: Pirates at Brewers
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Author:  JackLambert58 [ Tue Jun 20, 2017 5:55 pm ]
Post subject:  Game 71: Pirates at Brewers

At Miller Park
Game time: 7:40PM ET
Probable starters:
PIT: Chad Kuhl (1-6, 5.61 ERA)
MIL: Zach Davies (7-3, 4.91 ERA)

After redefining his pitching repertoire this season, Pirates right-hander Chad Kuhl will look to surpass five innings for the first time in more than two months and record his first win since April 8 when he takes the mound against the Brewers at Miller Park on Tuesday.

He'll face off against fellow 24-year-old righty Zach Davies, who has been rolling recently. Davies allowed just seven runs over his last four outings at Miller Park -- including two scoreless starts -- and allowed two runs in 5 2/3 innings against the Pirates on May 7. Davies has two wins, against the Dodgers and D-backs, in three June starts.

Kuhl came to the big leagues as a ground-ball pitcher with an arsenal of pitches built around his slider. But this season, he has increased the average velocity on his four-seam fastball, hitting 94.39 mph this season compared to 93.32 mph in 2016.

"He's always had the ability to go get mid-90s, but it's been [maximum] effort, not a whole lot of command to it," Pirates general manager Neal Huntington said. "Now he's getting it more consistently. He's getting it with a little bit less effort and a little bit better command."

Pirates manager Clint Hurdle has never seen a pitcher pick up three or four mph on a fastball three months into the season and is excited to see how it will play out.

"It jumped all of a sudden," Hurdle said. "It was nothing we've ever seen. And then it happened and now it's repeatedly happening. Now it's in a place where you're kind of [like], 'OK now it's going to happen.' This is what we've got."

Kuhl also just started throwing a high-70s, low-80s curveball a few starts ago, a pitch that Huntington said gives him a unique feeling on the mound.

"The curveball gives him something soft, allows the velocity to play a little better," Huntington said. "It does play with his personality. We've shifted. Let's go with the velocity. Let's go with the four-seam [and] curveball and mix in some sliders and some changeups and some two-seamers when you need them. Use your weapons."

Three things to know about this game

• Brewers outfielder Keon Broxton showed he can crush a fastball just as hard as anyone when he hit Michael Wacha's four-seamer a Statcast-projected 489 feet Thursday for MLB's second-longest home run of the season. But there are other times when Broxton can create quite a breeze in the batter's box. Entering this series, the Brewers' center fielder ranked near the top of the Statcast leaderboard in both line-drive rate and whiff rate against fastballs in the strike zone so far this year.

• Things looked bleak for outfielder Andrew McCutchen on the morning of May 26, with the Pirates' star batting .203 and slugging just .360. Since then, McCutchen doubled his barrel-per-batted-ball rate, including a barreled home run Saturday with 103.6 mph exit velocity that proved to be the difference in Pittsburgh's 4-3 win over the Cubs. He also hit a two-run, opposite-field home run off Matt Garza in the opener against Milwaukee on Monday.

• The Pirates' bullpen owned a 4.14 ERA that ranked right near the middle of the 30 MLB teams entering Monday's opener, but Pittsburgh's relievers have shown an elite ability to finish at-bats when they get to two strikes. It starts with being aggressive, and the Pirates' relievers have combined for a 28.6 percent strike rate (called/swinging strikes and balls put in play) on two-strike pitches that ranks as the best in the Majors. Even better, the Pirates' bullpen has converted nearly 15 percent of their two-strike pitches into outs -- also a top-five rate. ... _pk=491165


Author:  bam morris [ Tue Jun 20, 2017 8:37 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Game 71: Pirates at Brewers

maybe pirates are returning to mean on their long time domination at hands of brew crew.. if so we have a ton of wins coming our way!!
6-1 early..

Author:  Steel Drummer [ Tue Jun 20, 2017 10:57 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Game 71: Pirates at Brewers

Sweet! No late-inning drama; Rivero efficient; terrific grab by Frazier to end it.

Author:  JackLambert58 [ Wed Jun 21, 2017 5:10 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Game 71: Pirates at Brewers

We had 'em all the way!


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