Pittsburgh Pirates home stand report card 7/26 – 8/5
Offense – the good
David Freese is finally making positive contributions after two years of being quite ‘meh.’ The veteran has been picking up the slack, and over the past week his role became more important with Josh Bell going to the DL. The outfield of Gregory Polanco, Starling Marte, and Corey Dickerson continues to be among the best in the National League, and have made sure that the Bucs are set at the top of the lineup.
Like Freese, Adam Frazier has come up big after a slow start, most notably delivering the eventual game-winning single in Friday’s 7-6 win over St. Louis. He also delivered a game-tying double on Saturday night, before the Pirate bullpen melted down in an 8-4 loss.
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I’ve said it in every review thus far, and it’s no less true now, for the Pirates to reach their maximum potential the offense has to be the team’s strong point. While the bats still have plenty of issues, Pittsburgh is getting contributions from several areas.
Offense – the bad
The Bucs were shut out by the Mets when somebody other than Jacob DeGrom was pitching, so that was probably the low point of this homestand.
The offense also struggled against Cole Hamels and didn’t get much done in the last 14 innings of the Cardinals’ series. The bats were just too inconsistent this week, and the Cardinals series, which started with a seven runs performance and ended with a one-run output, is an example of that.
Overall, the Pirates scored 35 runs over eight games, which was good for a little over four runs per contest. That’s not terrible, however, for the Bucs to make a playoff push, the bats will have to be more consistent