Underwood (2-3) took the loss versus Arizona on Wednesday. He allowed two runs on three hits and struck out one in one inning. Underwood was taken deep back-to-back by Pavin Smith and Daulton Varsho, and that was enough to stick the right-hander with the loss. Wednesday was the first time in 31 appearances Underwood allowed multiple homers. He's posted a 5.02 ERA, 1.50 WHIP and 48:19 K:BB through 52 innings, but nine of the 29 earned runs he's allowed have come in his last three outings.
The Pirates reinstated Underwood from the 10-day injured list Sunday. The righty missed the minimum amount of time after landing on the injured list July 9 with side soreness. Underwood has a 4.86 ERA in 50 innings this year, but he had a 3.67 ERA before allowing a seven-run inning in his most recent appearance. Nick Mears was optioned to Triple-A Indianapolis in a corresponding move.
Underwood (2-2) pitched two scoreless innings, allowing two hits and a walk while striking out four to earn the win versus Miami. Starter Mitch Keller left the game with a heat illness, and Underwood was the first reliever to enter. He did well in relief, and Pittsburgh pulled ahead on his watch, which put him in line for the win. The right-hander has a 3.93 ERA, 1.37 WHIP and 34:12 K:BB across 34.1 innings this year. He's added one hold, but Underwood has taken on a bulk relief role lately -- five of his last seven outings have spanned multiple innings.
Underwood (1-1) was tagged with the loss in relief Wednesday against the Padres after allowing two runs (one earned) on two hits and a strikeout across one inning. Underwood pitched the sixth inning but he did himself no favors by putting the first two men he faced on before recording an out. He limited the damage to two runs, yet that was more than enough for him to get tagged with his first loss of the campaign. Underwood owns a 3.94 ERA across 12 appearances, but the fact that he has given up two or more runs in two of his last three outings is somewhat concerning.
Underwood struck out the side in a perfect fourth inning during Thursday's 5-3 win over the Cubs. Underwood holds a career 7.9 K/9 while working predominantly as a starter in the minors, but his pitches have played up as a reliever in the big leagues and he has a 11/1 K/9 in 37.1 MLB innings following Thursday's appearance. Pittsburgh currently envisions using Underwood as a multi-inning reliever. Acquired from the Cubs in early March, the 26-year-old could get a look as a starter if he continues to pitch well given the uncertainty in the Pirates' rotation.
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