Puk allowed an unearned run on one hit while recording four strikeouts over 2.1 innings in a loss to the Mariners on Thursday. The big left-hander had endured a bit of a rocky stretch over his previous four appearances, allowing five runs (four earned) on four hits and two walks in 2.1 innings. However, Puk's first outing of at least two innings since May 12 likely served as a confidence booster, as he was exceedingly sharp while firing 28 of his 33 pitches for strikes.
Puk (1-1) was charged with the loss against the Yankees on Monday, allowing three runs (two earned) on one hit and a hit batsman over one-third of an inning. Puk's rollercoaster of an appearance began when he plunked the first batter he faced, Anthony Rizzo, to load the bases. Giancarlo Stanton subsequently reached on a catcher's interference to plate DJ LeMahieu and Puk then conceded a two-run double to Josh Donaldson before exiting. The rocky outing was an extension of a rough patch for the left-hander, who's now given up at least one run in three of the last four appearances to raise his ERA and WHIP from 1.65 and 0.99 to 2.73 and 1.11, respectively.
Puk allowed two inherited runners to score on two walks and two wild pitches, taking a blown save in Thursday's 2-1 loss to the Mariners. He pitched one-third of an inning. While the runs and the loss went on Zach Jackson's line, Puk was very clearly responsible. Both walks and wild pitches he gave up came with two outs, and the southpaw's struggles are highlighted by the fact he threw only seven of 17 pitches for strikes. Through nine outings in June, Puk has allowed three runs, seven hits, three hit batters and two walks in 8.2 innings. He still has a 1.91 ERA and 1.06 WHIP across 28.1 innings overall, but the shaky showing Thursday wasn't a great first audition for more save chances with Dany Jimenez (shoulder) on the injured list.
Puk allowed an earned run on a solo home run over two-thirds of an inning in a loss to the Astros on Monday. Facing Yordan Alvarez in a same-handed matchup in the eighth inning, Puk conceded a 444-foot solo shot to right center that accounted for the final run of the afternoon. Puk still carries an excellent 1.37 ERA and 1.07 WHIP, but he's now notably given up an earned run in both of his last two outings after going 12 straight appearances without being scored on from April 14 to May 23.
Puk recorded his third hold in a win over the Angels on Friday, firing a perfect eighth inning during which he recorded two strikeouts. Puk served as a bridge to Dany Jimenez in the ninth with an efficient 13-pitch frame that saw him get nine offerings into the strike zone. The towering southpaw has left a mostly miserable 2021 in the dust, posting one victory and the trio of holds alongside an 0.52 ERA and 0.81 WHIP over 17.1 innings across 13 appearances.
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