Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Slide Ends at 4 Burnett Benefits from 4 Homers Pirates 9 Indians 2

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Slide Ends at 4 Burnett Benefits from 4 Homers Pirates 9 Indians 2

Article excerpt

CLEVELAND -- As it turned out, the Pirates polished off the Cleveland Indians with a seven-run margin of victory Saturday afternoon, relegating Casey McGehee's sixth-inning home run to a spot right beside the other three the Pirates hit.

At the time, the home run broke a tie. Either way, it represented the latest step in McGehee's recent offensive surge.

McGehee's four RBIs and the Pirates' four home runs gave them a 9- 2 win against the Indians at Progressive Field, halting a four-game losing streak.

McGehee went 2 for 4 with a walk and two runs. He raised his average, which had bottomed at .184 May 25, to .243, thanks in part to a 9-for-21 streak in his past six games.

"It's a little bit of a tough situation coming to a new organization and wanting to make an impact right away," said McGehee, acquired in a trade from the Milwaukee Brewers in December.

"I think sometimes it's easy to put too much pressure on yourself, try to do a little bit too much.

"For whatever reason, the last little while I've been able to take a step back and relax and get back to playing my game."

McGehee entered the game hitting .371 in his past 16 games since that low point. He started only eight of those games, but said playing the past five games in American League parks, where the lineups include a designated hitter and allow him to start regularly, might have helped.

"I think there's a lot to be said for that," he said. "I think it's a lot easier to kind of get in the flow of the game. Maybe subconsciously not feel like so much is riding on every pitch, every at-bat.

"I think as long as I can keep my approach and stay with what I'm doing right now, it's going to work out for the better."

McGehee's afternoon started slowly. He struck out looking on a 3- 2 breaking ball from Indians starter Ubaldo Jimenez with two on and two out in the first.

"I didn't think there was any chance in the world he would throw a slider for a strike right there," he said.

His next at-bat, he grounded into a double play with two on. …

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