Pittsburgh Pirates home stand report card for June 27-July 2

ATLANTA, GA - MAY 22: Pitcher Gerrit Cole(Photo by Mike Zarrilli/Getty Images)
ATLANTA, GA - MAY 22: Pitcher Gerrit Cole(Photo by Mike Zarrilli/Getty Images) /
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PITTSBURGH, PA – JUNE 17: Clint Hurdle
PITTSBURGH, PA – JUNE 17: Clint Hurdle /

Bullpen

Felipe Rivero showed that he is human in the series opener Tuesday night. The outstanding reliever struggled with command and allowed two runs.  One of those runs was unearned due to Freese’s miscue. The bullpen did its job in Wednesday’s  game. After Nova had departed, Daniel Hudson, Tony Watson, Juan Nicasio and Rivero shut out the Rays over the next four innings, ensuring that there would not be a comeback. Thursday, the ‘pen did the unthinkable and shut down the opposition for the second night in a row. Watson, Nicasio and Edgar Santana shut out the Rays over 3.2 innings, again securing a four-run W.

After Cole had stunk up the joint for 5.1 innings Friday night, the Bucco bullpen stunk it up for the next 3.2. The ‘pen allowed six more runs, killing any chance for a comeback, and completing a pathetic all around effort. The bullpen did its job, for the most part, Saturday, keeping the Giants off the scoreboard for four innings after Kuhl had departed. All that work was undone, however, when a wild pitch from Daniel Hudson allowed the eventual winning run to score in the eleventh.

The series ended in fitting fashion. After Trevor Williams had departed, Tony Watson came on. Watson did not do his job, allowing the go-ahead run to cross the plate, and taking the big fat L. The Bucco bullpen has been frustrating for quite some time now. This feeling was validated in this past series with the Giants was no exception. Overall, the Pirates bullpen performed well for two and a half games in this six game home stand. As anybody who follows this team should know, relief pitching has not been a strong point. Sadly, these past six games have not brought much hope for brighter days ahead.

Overall Grade: C-