He’s three hits away from the record. The pressure is on, but he’s staying true to himself.
This is the story of Andrew McCutchen, the Pittsburgh Pirates’ “Pirate Captain.
McCutchen went 3-for-4 with a walk and a sacrifice fly in the Pirates’ 5-4 win at home against the Oakland Athletics on June 6.
In the sixth inning, McCutchen drew an eight-pitch walk off Shintaro Fujinami with the bases loaded. On a 3-1 count, he fouled off three consecutive 100-mph fastballs and held off an eight-pitch pitch that slipped under the borderline.
In the eighth, he scored the game-winning run on a sacrifice fly. It was a tough at-bat, but he didn’t waver, and his team won.
“It shows how good he is,” said head coach Derek Shelton, who praised the way he kept his teammates in mind even when he had a big game in front of him.
Head coach Ben Cherrington joined in the praise. “I’m really impressed with his swing decisions. He’s showing consistency every at-bat. He’s trying to find ways to get on base, not just get hits. Plus, he seems to enjoy every day. He’s fun to be around,” he said of the veteran.
McCutchen said, “2,000 hits is inevitable. I’m going to get there at some point. So I’m not stressing about it at all,” McCutchen said of the 2,000-hit challenge.
“I’m trying not to get greedy. I’m trying to stay true to myself. I’m trying to understand the situation, and I’m just looking for good balls to hit,” he said of his approach at the plate.
“In April, I didn’t win many games when I was behind like that. I think the last series against St. Louis was a big comeback win. I think it gave us a lot 메이저사이트 more belief, a lot more confidence. We’re in a very good place right now,” he said, adding that he was positive about the team’s current position.
Pittsburgh has been consistently above .500 and hasn’t fallen behind in the race for the district lead. They currently sit at 32-27, with a half-game lead over the Milwaukee Brewers.
“We’re in a good spot right now,” McCutchen said, “but we have to keep doing what we’re doing. If we keep winning games, we’ll be in a good position at the end. There’s still a lot of games left. We need to focus on the game day by day, not the leaderboard. What we need is to win,” he emphasized.
In the last six matches, he has shown that his words and his performance match. It was a day when he showed why he is a great player and why he deserves the nickname ‘Pirate Captain’.