The timing couldn’t have been better for our own Lastings Milledge.
With his team mired in a 12 game losing streak and the Pittsburgh Pirates outfield getting a little crowded with the recent call up Jose Tabata, Milledge needed to do something to assure his spot in the Pirates lineup.
The Lakewood Ranch product did just that Saturday when he drove in four runs and just missed hitting for the cycle with a triple, double and single in sparking the Bucs to a 6-4 victory over Cleveland.
He also boosted his season batting average to .276, which is the third highest on the team among those with at least 100 at-bats and one point behind Garrett Jones.
Milledge has raised his batting average 30 points in the last two weeks and in the last seven games has 11 hits in 20 at-bats, getting multiple hits in four of those games. He is hitting .381 in the month of June.
Perhaps the best part about Milledge is that he is hitting a torrid .408 with runners in scoring position.
The Pirates have given Milledge’s left field spot to Tabata and it was reported that he would be splitting the right field job with Ryan Church and Delwyn Young. Pittsburgh manager John Russell said he didn’t want to make Milledge a bench player.
The Palmetto native didn’t waste any time providing energy for his teammates and the crowd to soak up when he dove head first into first base in the first inning to get an infield single.