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Pirates outfielder Jake Marisnick staged ‘clinic’ with two diving catches against Padres

When Derek Shelton watched the ball from Ha-Seong Kim’s bat and sailed down the left field line, the Pirates manager thought there was no way Jake Marisnick would get there in time.

Marisnick was slightly more optimistic. The Pirates left fielder thought his chances of getting the ball were borderline but sprinted until it “just started to float” and was fully horizontal and fell to his chest with an unlikely grip.

“Those are the real specials when you look in there and say, ‘Did I get it? Said Marisnick. “Catches like this are something I’m proud of and something I’ve been working on for a long time.”

This gem was just one of Marisnick’s highlights in the 7-6 win over the San Diego Padres on Saturday night at PNC Park, when he had another dynamic diving catch and scored the tie. in the 10th inning to set the stage. for the heroism of Ke’Bryan Hayes.

“Jake Marisnick in left field,” Shelton said. “It was a clinic. Wow.”

Marisnick set up a line drive from Trent Grisham to start the eighth inning, and Shelton pointed to a sloppy play Marisnick made catching Jurickson Profar’s deep volley to left center with runners at first and second in the fourth inning and throwing to Hayes at third. base.

“Usually it’s an automatic tag and you throw the ball to second and it’s first and third,” Shelton said. “He hit Ke’ at chest height. It was another game that goes unnoticed.

Marisnick’s outside play has not gone unnoticed by either Shelton or Pirates teammates. Marisnick made a pair of game-changing plays in the ninth inning to preserve the 4-3 win over the Chicago Cubs on April 24. After chasing one Rafael Ortega hit the bricks in right field and made a throw to hold it off. a double, Marisnick fired a laser beam to keep Ortega third on Seiya Suzuki’s shallow right double.

“It’s fun to play alongside him because he’s great,” Pirates star center fielder Bryan Reynolds said. “He can definitely turn the game around just through his defense. You saw it in the Chicago game. If someone else is there, we go into the extras and they score on that run. His arm is amazing. He turned that game around for us right there and got us the win.

Since signing with the Pirates just before Opening Day following injuries to Anthony Alford and Greg Allen, Marisnick, 31, has batted just .150 (6 for 40) with 11 strikeouts and one walk , but filled all three outfield positions. as a starting or defensive substitute at the end of the inning.

Marisnick earned a reputation for his arm and defense during a 10-year major league career spent with the Miami Marlins, Houston Astros, New York Mets, Cubs and Padres and is very proud of his ability to make plays that can alter the outcome.

“Without a doubt,” Marisnick said. “I like to talk about how defense is something you can bring every day. It’s not going away. You can go there and it’s something you’re proud of. It’s a way to change the ball game and help your team win every night.

Kevin Gorman is a staff writer for Tribune-Review. You can contact Kevin by email at kgorman@triblive.com or via Twitter .