Final: Pirates 9, Braves 3
McDonald’s evening started off rough as he gave up a 2-run homer to Freddie Freeman in the 1st inning, but went on quite a roll after that. He was locating all of his pitches and fooling hitters all night with his breaking balls. It was pretty fun to watch.
Pedro Alvarez hit his 5th homer of the season with an absolute laser about 7 rows deep. It was nice to see because it was a fastball and it was off a lefty, two things he previously has shown struggles with.
James McDonald has now pitched at least seven innings twice now this season. It took him until September last year to accomplish that same feat. He now has a 2.97 ERA on the year and 24 strikeouts in 30 1/3 innings.
Neil Walker was 3 for 5 to raise his average to .278. Every position player in the Pirates’ lineup collected at least one hit tonight.
Jose Tabata is now on a six game hitting streak where he is 10 for 26 (.385). He seems to be using the entire field now and is hopefully turning things around from his dreadful start to the season.