For the majority of the 2021 season, the Pittsburgh Pirates have been without Ke’Bryan Hayes. After missing 52 games, Hayes returned to the lineup on June 3. Despite missing two months, the Pirates’ third baseman has picked up where he left off and provided a spark to the offense.
In eight games since his return, Hayes is batting .333. The Pirates rookie has been an on base machine, as he has 11 hits in his last 33 at-bats. Five of those hits have gone for extra bases, including a home run in just his second game back. In his return, Hayes has not shown any rust and given the Pirates a dangerous top of the order that includes Adam Frazier and Bryan Reynolds.
Additionally, over the past week, Hayes has shown excellent plate discipline. In his last seven games, the Texas native has only struck out six times. Since June third, he only has multiple strikeouts in one game. For a Pirates offense that has struggled at times this year, his approach has been a welcome boost. Although Hayes made headlines on June 8 for a mistake on the basepaths, his bat has stayed hot.
I'm telling you, Ke'Bryan Hayes is BACK back pic.twitter.com/0Is7oMeio4
— Sarah Langs (@SlangsOnSports) June 4, 2021
Thus far in June, Hayes has a hit in every game. His hot streak has raised his average on the season by over a hundred points from .200 to .316. While he has excelled at the plate, he has been just as good in the field. In 27 chances this year, the 24-year-old has not committed an error. The Pirates’ third baseman has already turned three double plays, tying his total from last season.
The importance of Hayes to Pittsburgh
As the Pirates continue their rebuild, Hayes is a big part of their future. In his brief major league career, he has already proven that he can be a force offensively. Through ten games this year, he has hit three home runs and has seven runs batted in. The former top prospect also is fourth on the Pirates in home runs. Despite missing a large portion of the season, he is making up for lost time.
While the Pirates have struggled this year, Hayes has been a bright spot. He is one of baseball’s rising stars and has built on his impressive 2020 campaign. He seemingly makes an impact every game and has been one of the Pirates’ best bats. While the 2021 season is far from over, Hayes will be a player to watch for Pittsburgh.
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