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Game Thread: Pirates looking to finally score with Gausman on the mound

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MLB: Chicago Cubs at Pittsburgh Pirates Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The Kevin Newman era continues into it’s second day as the Pirates are desperate to break out of a scoring slump that has seen them score only five runs in their last five games, even as their pitching staff has only allowed five runs in the same span, leaving them with three losses. Ivan Nova (7-7, 4.26) will face the Braves’ recently acquired Kevin Gausman (7-9, 4.22)

Gausman came over in a deadline deal with the Orioles, where he’d spent his entire six year MLB career. In three starts with the Barves Gausman has allowed six runs, good for a 2.84 ERA. The 6 foot 4 inch, 170 pound right-hander throws fairly hard, averaging 93.7 mph on his fastball this year, with a high of 95.9 in 2013. He throws the fastball 67% of the time, complemented with a splitter (17%) and slider (14%) This year has seen Gausman be slightly more effective against left handed batters, holding them to a .772 OPS (263/331/441) while right handers hit for a .784 OPS (282/316/467), the main difference being only 10 walks to righties vs 26 to lefties in fewer batters faced.

Nova has been pitching somewhat better as of late, compiling a 3.72 ERA in his last seven starts and 3.63 over twelve. He does have troublesome platoon splits, with right handed batters averaging a .718 OPS on a 251/291/427 line, while left handers tag him for an All-Star level .864 OPS (297/37/527) Four out of the starting nine for Atlanta will swing from the left side against Nova.

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BRAVES

1 R Ronald Acuna LF

2 L Ender Enciarte CF

3 L Freddie Freeman 1B

4 L Nick Markakis RF

5 R Johan Camargo 3B

6 S Ozzie Albies 2B

7 R Kurt Suzuki C

8 R Dansby Swanson SS

9 R Kevin Gausman RHP

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PIRATES

1 L Corey Dickerson LF

2 L Adam Frazier CF

3 L Gregory Polanco RF

4 S Joshn Bell 1B

5 R Francisco Cervelli C

6 L Colin Moran 3B

7 R Adeinys Hechevarria SS

8 R Kevin Newman 2B

9 R Ivan Nova RHP