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Red Hot Bucs Take on Best Pitcher in National League

Winners in 12 of their last 14, the Pirates look to keep the wins coming against Mets ace deGrom.

July 28, 2018 - 4:56 pm

PITTSBURGH (93.7 The Fan) – Entering today just 3.5 games out of the second National League wild card spot the Pirates will look to creep even closer into playoff contention tonight at home against New York. Last night, the Pittsburgh (54-51) was willed to victory over the Mets (43-58) by an incredible performance from third basemen David Freese who drove in all five of the Bucs runs, including the game winner on a walk off hit in the bottom of the ninth inning.

On the mound for the Pirates tonight will be right hander, Trevor Williams. In 20 starts this season, Williams has gone 8-7 with a 4.11 earned run average. Williams has started in five of the Pirates 11 shout outs this season and enters today having pitched 11.0 consecutive scoreless innings. In his last outing, Williams earned his first ever complete game shutout in the Bucs 7-0 victory over the Cleveland Indians in a game that ended after only six innings due to rain on July 23. Trevor allowed just four hits and two walks while striking out one batter in the win. In his one career start against the Mets, Williams allowed just one run in 7.0 innings of work in a 11-1 Bucco victory on June 4, 2017.

Opposing Williams will be one of the top pitchers in the game, right hander Jacob deGrom. deGrom has gone 5-5 with a major league best 1.71 ERA in his 20 starts for the Mets this season. Along with his impressive ERA, deGrom is also second in the national league in strikeouts (159), opponent OPS (.549) and HR/9 rate (0.48). deGrom has delivered a quality start in his last 12 outings and has pitched at least 8.0 innings in his previous three starts. In his last time out, deGrom was dealt his fifth loss of the season despite allowing just three runs, two earned, off of five hits on 8.0 innings of work in the Mets 3-2 loss to the San Diego Padres on July 23. In five career starts against the Pirates, deGrom has a 1-2 record and an ERA of 2.14.

Back in the lineup for the Bucs this evening is centerfielder Starling Marte, who has not played since exiting the game against the Cleveland Indians on Wednesday when he was hit in the hand by a pitch in the first inning. Marte enters today with a career high 17 game hit streak which is currently the longest active streak in the majors. In addition to the hitting steak, Marte has also hit four doubles, seven homeruns and driven in 20 runs so far in the month of July. In addition to his impressive work at the plate, Marte has been excellent on the bases, entering today with a major league leading 25 steals.

Following their game tonight the Bucs will then play the Mets once more tomorrow before taking an off day on Monday. After the off day the Pirates will play the Chicago Cubs in a two game set which will then be followed by a three game series against the St. Louis Cardinals next weekend.