On Wednesday night the Pittsburgh Pirates saw the Major League debut of right-handed pitcher Jameson Taillon. However, it was spoiled by the New York Mets.
Wednesday night was a day many Pittsburgh Pirates fans had long been waiting for, the Major League debut of Jameson Taillon. In his first career start Taillon wound up allowing three runs on six hits in six innings pitched. However, the story of the game was the struggles of the Pittsburgh Pirates bullpen.
The Pittsburgh Pirates were able to tag New York Mets ace Noah Syndergaard for three runs on seven hits in six innings pitched. Then the Pirates took a a 5-3 in the bottom of the seventh inning, however the wheels began to come off in the top of the eighth. Anyway, here are the three Pittsburgh Pirates stars and stiffs for this game.
Outfielder Gregory Polanco – The Pittsburgh Pirates budding superstar went 3-for-5 on Wednesday night wit a trio of doubles. This was Polanco’s second career three double game after he also did it last month against the Atlanta Braves. Also, both of Polanco’s outs were hard hit balls on deep fly outs to center field and right field.
On Wednesday night, Gregory Polanco also drove in a pair of runs, scored a run, and stole his eighth base of the season. After recording a trio of doubles on Wednesday night, Polanco now has a National League leading 21 on the season. And Polanco’s two RBIs now gives him 40 on the season leading to his team lead.
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Overall on the season Gregory Polanco is now slashing .308/.387/.555/.942 on the season. Furthermore, Polanco has a .392 wOBA and a wRC+ of 151 on the season. Gregory Polanco has been the Pittsburgh Pirates best hitter this season, and is quickly evolving into the Pirates best all-around player.
First baseman John Jaso – Pittsburgh Pirates first baseman John Jaso collected a pair of base hits on Wednesday night. John Jaso finished the night 2-for-4 at the plate. Furthermore, Jaso hit a double and drove in a run.
After the Mets tied the game at two in the top of the fourth inning, John Jaso delivered an RBI double in the bottom of the fourth inning to score Sean Rodriguez and give the Pirates a 3-2 lead. On the season, Jaso now has a very healthy .348 wOBA and a 121 wRC+. John Jaso continues to prove to be a great signing by Neal Huntington.
Starting pitcher Jameson Taillon – In his Major League debut, Jameson Taillon gave the Pittsburgh Pirates a valiant effort. Taillon pitched six innings allowing three runs on six hits, two walks, and three strike outs.
Over the course of his six innings, Taillon really made just one bad pitch. That pitch came on a 3-1 count when facing Ty Kelly in the fourth inning. Taillon threw Kelly a middle-middle meatball that Kelly crushed for a two-run home run to tie the game at two. Outside of that pitch, Taillon pitched a solid game on Wednesday night.
Jameson Taillon, to no surprise, showed a plus curve ball in this game. Also, he showed good heat on his fastball sitting around 95 miles per hour and hitting 97+ miles per hour multiple times. Even though the results were not as good as Pittsburgh Pirates fans would have hoped, Jameson Taillon showed a lot of positive signs that can be built off of on Wednesday night.
Relief pitcher Jared Hughes – Jared Hughes has struggled so far in 2016, and that continued on Wednesday night. In the top of the eighth inning with the Pittsburgh Pirates leading 5-3, Jared Hughes took over for A.J. Schugel after Schugel issued a lead off walk to Alejandro De Aza. Things went south for Hughes, and fast, on Wednesday night.
On just the second pitch her threw, Jared Hughes allowed a game tying two-run home run to Michael Conforto. Hughes would then allow a single to Yoenis Cespedes, walk Neil Walker, and uncork and wild pitch to give the Mets runners on second and third with no one out. To Hughes’ credit though, he put a foot down here.
Jared Hughes then got a ground out with the infield in, a fly out to shallow left field, and a ground out to shortstop to end the inning. However, Hughes’ job on Wednesday night was to preserve the Pittsburgh Pirates lead and he failed to do this. After his poor outing on Wednesday, Hughes now has a 6.05 FIP and a 6.38 xFIP on the season. The Pittsburgh Pirates need Jared Hughes to be better out of their bullpen.
Relief pitcher Corey Luebke – Corey Luebke took over on the mound with the game tied at five in the top of the tenth inning, and things went bad and fast. Luebke walked Yoenis Cespedes to lead off the inning and then gave up a single to Neil Walker. He then intentionally walked James Loney to load the bases for Wilmur Flores.
Wilmure Flores would dump a RBI single into center field to give the Mets a 6-5 lead. Luebke managed to prevent any further damage though, and sent the Pirates to the bottom of the tenth trailing 6-5. On the season Corey Luebke now has a 15.75 ERA, 13.12 FIP, and a xFIP of 9.47. Yikes.
Second baseman Josh Harrison – The stiffs list is one that Josh Harrison does not find himself on very often, but he is one it on Wednesday night. Yes Harrison stole two bases and drove in a run with a sac fly on Wednesday night, but his problems ran much deeper than this.
Harrison went just 1-for-4 at the plate, and this included a poor first inning at bat. In the first inning with the Pirates having runners on the corners with no one out Josh Harrison struck out swinging on just three pitches. This was an extremely poor at bat, and proved to be costly as the Pirates not adding a third first inning run came back to bite them.
That will do it for tonight. Even though the Pirates lost on Wednesday night, they still took two of three from one of the National League’s best teams. Also, they did it by defeating two very good pitchers in Steven Matz and Jacob deGrom. Time to go get a win in Colorado tomorrow.