MLB Game Preview: San Diego Padres at Pittsburgh Pirates

Jun 28, 2023

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Game: San Diego Padres @ Pittsburgh PIrates

Time: 7:05 p.m.

Odds: Padres -162, Pirates +149

Total: 9.5

On Wednesday, the Pittsburgh Pirates will play the second game of a three-game series against the visiting San Diego Padres with their newly discovered offense.

The Pirates, who were mired in a 1-12 run that included six games with three runs or fewer scored and four shutout losses, broke free on Tuesday with a 9-4 victory over the Padres. They hammered out 16 hits, three of which were home runs.

Nick Gonzales, who was appearing in his fourth major league game, hit a huge home run to dead center. Earlier in the game, he tripled to record his first big-league hit. Henry Davis, another Pirate who was just recently called up for the first time, went 2-for-5 with an RBI single.

Veteran designated hitter Andrew McCutchen of the Pirates spoke with his teammates prior to the game. He reminded them of what to focus on as they continue their season. Pittsburgh had a 20-9 record at the end of April but has since gone 16-33.

Mitch Keller, who has emerged as the Pirates’ ace, will take the mound tonight. Starting pitching has been one of the few bright spots for the Pirates during a difficult month of June. San Diego left-hander Blake Snell (4-6, 3.22) will oppose Keller (8-3, 3.45 ERA).

Keller pitched seven innings against Miami in his last start and allowed just one run on five hits. He struck out five and issued no walks. Keller came close to snapping the Pirates’ nine-game losing streak. He didn’t receive a decision, though, as the Marlins came back to defeat Pittsburgh’s bullpen 6-4. In three starts against San Diego in his career, Keller is 1-2 with a 4.80 ERA.

The Padres have lost eight of their last 12 games, which is a frustrating sign of their recent inconsistent play. With Snell starting, the timing for the Padres could be favorable. San Diego’s pitching plans are a little uncertain because anticipated Tuesday starter Yu Darvish was scratched due to illness and did not go to Pittsburgh. Reiss Knehr started and took the loss on Tuesday as the team played from the bullpen.

Snell enters the game with a 0.29 ERA over his last five starts, assuming he pitches as planned. Snell allowed a total of five hits and three walks while striking out 23 batters in his last two starts. He beat the Tampa Bay Rays on June 17 and the San Francisco Giants on Thursday. Snell has made two career starts against Pittsburgh and is 0-1 with a 14.29 ERA.

The Padres are just 2-6 SU in their last eight games. Pittsburgh is even worse with a 2-12 SU record over their last 14 games. San Diego has lost three straight and has scored just seven runs in the process. That comes after back-to-back double-digit run totals in wins over San Francisco and Washington.

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