Padres, Pirates bring prolonged slumps into series lid lifter

Padres, Pirates bring prolonged slumps into series lid lifter


The visiting San Diego Padres are struggling. The Pittsburgh Pirates are in a tailspin. That’s the setup for their series that opens Tuesday

The Padres have lost seven of their past 11 games and two straight series

“It’s just not good enough right now,” San Diego right fielder Fernando Tatis Jr. said after the latest setback, an 8-3 loss Sunday against the Washington Nationals.

Tatis extended his on-base streak to 18 games, one shy of his career best, but it was far from enough.

The Padres are four games under .500, and manager Bob Melvin isn’t trying to put a PR spin on that

“We never expected to be where we (are) record-wise at this point, but it is what it is, and it basically tells you where you are,” Melvin said.

Despite this still being June and the All-Star break still a couple weeks away, Melvin’s players are feeling the pressure.

“We have to start (turning it around). We have to,” shortstop Xander Bogaerts said. “There’s not a lot of tomorrows left. The season is coming to an end, not soon, but it is. If we keep tacking on losses, it’s going to come quick.”

Pittsburgh, after starting June 6-3, has now lost 12 of 13. Those 12 losses include four shutouts — most recently a 2-0 setback Sunday against the Miami Marlins — and five other games with three runs or fewer.

The Pirates lost three of four in the series against the Marlins, wasting strong performances by their starters

“There is frustration in that we could have won three of four — you saw four well-pitched games from our starters,” Pittsburgh manager Derek Shelton said.

The Pirates are without left fielder Bryan Reynolds (10-day IL), and third baseman Ke’Bryan Hayes was out Sunday because of lower back stiffness. That’s a blow to the offense

“The pitching staff is doing a great job, and, unfortunately, we’re not picking them up with runs at this time,” outfielder Connor Joe said. “To be in all four of those games in (the Miami) series despite lack of production from the offense is a positive. It’s something the team can build on. It gives us a chance.”

In the series opener, San Diego right-hander Yu Darvish (5-6, 4.84 ERA) and Pittsburgh left-hander Rich Hill (6-7, 4.34) are scheduled to start.

Darvish, a five-time All-Star who opened the season with five quality starts in his first seven appearances, has run into a bump. He has lost two straight starts and has given up 10 runs over his past 11 innings. He has one quality start over his past seven outings.

Most recently, he allowed four runs in six innings Wednesday against the San Francisco Giants.

“I have to take it like a man,” Darvish said through an interpreter.

Darvish is 4-2 with a 2.63 ERA in nine career starts against the Pirates

Hill is coming off tough outing Wednesday, when he gave up five runs (three earned) in 5 2/3 innings against the Chicago Cubs in an 8-3 Pittsburgh loss.

Hill is 6-4 with a 3.03 ERA in 13 career starts against the Padres but has not faced them since 2019

–Field Level Media


Original source here

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About the Author

Anthony Barnett
Anthony is the author of the Science & Technology section of ANH.