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In Case You Missed It - Episode 6, 2023

by J.T. Toth

August 27, 2023

Photo courtesy of Tribune Review.

It is that time of the week when Draft 412 summarizes the past seven days of worthy news nuggets that you may have missed. Let us catch you up here:

Four Players Enter the Pirates Hall of Fame

This past week four former Pirates players got elected into the Pirates Hall of Fame. Draft 412 takes a look at the class.

Kent Tekulve

The “rubberband man” or “Teke” was a relief pitcher signed by the Pirates out of Marietta College in 1969. Tekulve led the National League in games pitched 4 times and ended his career with 1,050 games pitched, while saving 184 games including 3 saves in the 1979 World Series.

Dick Groat

The original “Bo Jackson,” Groat had an unbelievable basketball career at Duke and later played one season for the Fort Wayne Pistons in the NBA. He joined the Pirates as a 21-year-old and enlisted in the army after his rookie season. He rejoined the Pirates in 1955 and instantly became their best hitter leading the team in hits and batting average. Groat and Bill Mazeroski are still considered to be on the short list of the best double play combinations of all time. Groat won 2 world series championships in his career, one with Pittsburgh (1960) and one with St. Louis (1964). Groat passed away recently in 2023 at the age of 92.

Elroy Face

Face was one of the greatest relief pitchers of all time and in 1959, he had arguably the best season by a relief pitcher ever, going 18-1 in 57 games pitched, all in relief. A lot of historians consider Face the first closer in baseball history. He was part of the 1960 Pirates that upset the New York Yankees in 7 games.

Bob Friend

Friend pitched for the Pirates from 1951-1965 and was a consistent performer whose dependable arm allowed him to throw every 4 days. He surpassed 200 innings 11 times in his Pirates career, including in 1956 when he threw a league-leading 314.1 innings. Friend passed away in 2019 at the age of 88.

Skenes AA Struggle

In his 4th professional start, Paul Skenes finally looked human as he ran into trouble in the first inning pitching for the AA Altoona Curve. He gave up 4 earned runs on 3 hits, 2 walks, and striking out 2, but did not make it out of the first inning. His next start will be against Erie late next week.

Pickett Finishes a Perfect Preseason

Kenny Pickett led the Steelers on 5 preseason drives and each one of these drives ended in a touchdown. The offense was clicking on all cylinders but more specifically Pickett played at an elite level. He ended the preseason going 13-15 for 199 yards and two touchdowns, his quarterback rating was a perfect score of 158.3

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