The Cincinnati Reds visit the Pittsburgh Pirates Saturday for the second game of a three-game series between the National League Central rivals.
The Reds were off Thursday, but shut out the Kansas City Royals 7-0 on Wednesday to sweep a short two-game interleague series for their third straight win. The Reds were led by Tyler Mahle who allowed just three hits while pitching into the seventh inning and Adam Duvall who hit a grand slam.
Pittsburgh was also idle on Thursday and avoided a sweep on Wednesday by beating the Arizona Diamondbacks 5-4. Jordy Mercer hit a home run and drove three runs while Jameson Taillon pitched seven strong innings.
Scooter Gennett leads the Reds with a.341 batting average and team highs in hits with 85 and home runs with 12. Eugenio Suarez leads the team in RBIs with 49. Cincinnati has a team batting average of .251, while opposing hitters are averaging .266 at the plate against Reds pitching. On Saturday, the Reds will send Luis Castillo to the mound. The right-hander this season is 4-7 with an ERA of 5.79, 74 Ks and 29 BBs.
Corey Dickerson leads the Pirates with a .310 batting average and team high 74 hits. Francisco Cervelli leads the team in home runs with nine. Josh Bell has a team high 36 RBIs. Pittsburgh has a team batting average of .253 while opposing hitters are averaging .252 at the plate against Pirates pitching. On Saturday, Pittsburgh will send Ivan Nova to the mound. The right-hander this season is 3-5 with an ERA of 4.68, 55 Ks and 12 BBs.