The Pittsburgh Pirates were home this Easter Sunday and were wrapping up a three-game series with the Chicago White Sox. The two teams split the first two games leading to the afternoon rubber match. Pitching was at a premium for both teams, but a second inning run from Pittsburgh gave them a 1-0 victory and the series.
That lone run came to fruition on a Jack Suwinski sacrifice fly to plate Canaan Smith-Njigba. Smith-Njigba reached third base after hitting his first triple of the season. The big, and bad, news of the day came in the bottom of the sixth when Oneil Cruz tried to slide under a tag at home. In the process he injured his ankle, which was later diagnosed as a fractured ankle. Further updates will be reported in the upcoming week.
Johan Oviedo was lights out for the Pirates today during his 6.2 innings on the mound. He struck out five batters and allowed five hits. He was replaced by Dauri Moreta, who would strikeout the lone batter he faced. The eighth inning belonged to Colin Holderman and he would collect a strikeout during his time on the bump. David Bednar came on in the ninth and picked up his fourth save of the season, as he allowed one hit to go with two strikeouts.
Michael Kopech got the ball for Chicago and allowed one run on two hits with three walks and five strikeouts during six innings pitched. Jimmy Lambert worked the seventh, striking out two and walking one. The eighth saw the ball go to Jake Diekman and he would strikeout one batter.
While the injury to Cruz puts a damper on the win, Pittsburgh is off to their best start since 2018, which was also their last winning season. Things will not get any easier as the defending World Series Champion Houston Astros come to town for a three-game series beginning Monday night. Roansy Contreras is scheduled to start for the Pirates, while Houston will counter with Framber Valdez.
Record vs. White Sox: 2-1
Record vs. American League: 5-1
Record at Home: 2-1
Overall Record: 6-3
Let’s Go Bucs!