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Notes: Another Meh Week, Guys Up & Down, Mitch the Man, Injury Report, Black Leagues Recognized & Stuff

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June In Bloom…

At Motown: Memorial Day was off – go figure – followed by a quick two-game set at Comerica Park. It was real quick; Tuesday’s opener was a rainout, so they played two on Wednesday. Jared Jones was human and the Pirates gave him no fielding or hitting support in game #1, an 8-0 beatdown at the paws of El Tigre. But they reversed course in the nightcap. Behind Paul Skenes and the smokin’ bats of Cutch and Nick Gonzales, the Bucs split the series by running away with a 10-2 dub.

Rowdy Tellez – 2024 photo/Pirates

Then To Toronto: Thursday was an off day, too, then it was hullo, Rogers Centre, for three matches. The kick-off contest went 14 frames, with Toronto getting a two-out, walk-off blast to win 5-3, wasting another strong Bailey Falter outing as the Pirates continue to self-inflict wounds. But no excuses Saturday. Mitch Keller went six frames and Luis Ortiz closed it out, earning his first MLB save, in an 8-1 dub. Ke’Bryan Hayes and Bryan Reynolds both bopped two-run bombs. Quinn Priester got the nod for the rubber match. He did OK, but the pen failed him while the Pirates stranded 13 runners in a 5-4 loss. At least Rowdy Tellez found his mojo, driving in all four Bucco scores.

The club returns to PNC on Tuesday to host three-game sets w/the LA Dodgers (Tyler Glasnow comes home) and Minnesota Twins.


  • The Pirates placed LHP Martin Perez (groin) on the 15-day IL and C Joey Bart (left thumb) on the 10-day IL; 3B Ke’Bryan Hayes returned to action and C Grant Koch was added to the roster. Koch made his MLB debut on Wednesday and was the fifth different Bucco catcher to play so far this season. C Jason Delay’s rehab assignment (knee) was transferred to Indy on Monday. He originally went on the DL on April 1 and is eligible for reinstatement. On Sunday night, though, the Post-Gazette’s Jason Mackey posted that Henry Davis is coming back up, per his source, so the never-ending catching saga continues.
  • On Sunday, the Pirates placed IF Alika Williams on the 10-day IL (right wrist sprain) and Priester was recalled to start.
  • RHP Daulton Jefferies, acquired from the Giants in a minor-league trade on May 10, was the 27th player for the second game of the Wednesday doubleheader at Detroit. He didn’t get any action.
  • RHP prospect Bubba Chandler gave the fans a chill when he went on the IL, but he’s back in action and said his time off was precautionary. His elbow, which was operated on when he was in HS, tightens up occasionally, calling for a short break.
  • Indy LHP Cam Alldred was released by the Pirates so he could sign with the Korean Kia Tigers. He had an inning of MLB work, giving up a hit with a K, for the Bucs in 2022. He got his Korean opp when Kia’s Wil Crowe, another ex-Buc, injured his elbow to open a spot.

Stuff Happens:

  • Per the Pirates PR gang: Mitch Keller won his fifth straight start, improving to 7-3 this season after being 7-1 on June 1, 2023. According to OptaStats, Keller is the fifth MLB pitcher since 2013 to reach seven-plus wins by June 1 in back-to-back seasons. It’s fast company: the other four are Justin Verlander (2018-19) Clayton Kershaw (2016-17), Felix Hernandez (2014-15) and Adam Wainwright (2013-14). Kells is also the first Pirate to have seven-plus wins through June 1 in consecutive years since Howie Camnitz from 1908-1909. Not mentioned was that it was Mitch’s 43rd straight start of five or more innings.
Mitch Keller – 2024 Topps
  • If you were looking for the Pirates to bring in a veteran bat to help mend a couple of holes, don’t hold your breath. On his radio show, GM Ben said he thought the team was deeper than last year’s and any in-season improvement would be from players already rostered in the Buc minor league system.
  • IF Jhonny Severino, 19, was selected as the Florida Complex Player of the Week. Seve was the return for 1B Carlos Santana last year, and hit .438/three HR/six RBI last week. He was one of the top Latino signees of ’22, inking for a $1.23M bonus.
  • A committee with stalwarts including the likes of John Thorn, SABR, Elias Sports and Seam Heads put together a database of Negro League stats from seven different recognized leagues/2,300 players, and though not complete (they estimate about 70-75% of the games are documented), the game boxes they did find are now included with MLB stats. If you’re wondering, MLB before accepted stats compiled by the NL, AL, American Association, Union Association, Players League and Federal League.
  • 1B Ji Man Choi (2023 – .205/six HR for Pgh) was released by the Mets; the 33-year-old was playing AAA ball in their system and batting .190.


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