Pirates rookie Bryan Reynolds takes fanfare around his hitting streak in stride | TribLIVE.com

Pirates rookie Bryan Reynolds takes fanfare around his hitting streak in stride

On a leather chair, a baseball and batting gloves sat atop the Pittsburgh Pirates lineup card for a game against the Texas Rangers, personal keepsakes for rookie outfielder Bryan Reynolds.

Reynolds pointed to his prized possessions — all from his first career major-league home run — as nonchalantly as he has handled the attention from the hot start to his major-league career.

When he arrived at his locker in the clubhouse, Reynolds was surprised to be surrounded by cameras and microphones.

“I’m not going to be a guy that’s going to strive to get in front of the camera every opportunity I get, but it’s cool to get to do this,” Reynolds said. “It’s a little bit bigger stage than anything I’ve ever done. I don’t think I’ll let it become a distraction.”

His calm demeanor has carried over to the batter’s box, where Reynolds was 12 for 29 (.414) with six doubles and the home run going into Friday’s game against the Oakland A’s at PNC Park.

“I’m just trying to be myself out there, and that kind of helps me relax a little bit,” Reynolds said. “I’m not trying to do too much. I’m not trying to hit a homer every swing. I’m just trying to be relaxed and put the barrel on the ball as much as I can.”

Reynolds has been doing just that. He has seven extra-base hits, including a bases-clearing double in a 7-5 victory over the Rangers on Wednesday.

“It’s good to have a nice start,” Reynolds said. “I’d rather do that than go oh-fer in my first 20. I guess it kind of alleviates a little pressure.”

His first homer was monumental, a game-winning solo shot off Texas reliever Jesse Chavez in the 11th inning of the Pirates’ 6-4 victory Tuesday that snapped an eight-game losing streak.

“That was cool,” Reynolds said. “I wasn’t trying to do that. I was trying to get on base somehow and got a good pitch and got the barrel to it. I always dreamt of that as a kid — hitting a homer — so to do that was pretty cool.”

Reynolds was tied with Atlanta’s Nick Markakis for the longest hitting streak in the National League, and is one of just two Pirates since 1900 to start his career with a hit in each of his first nine games. Right fielder Gregory Polanco set the club record in 2014, with a hit in each of his first 11 games.

“He’s no muss. He’s no fuss,” Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said of Reynolds. “I don’t think he gets caught up real high. I don’t think he gets too low. He’s just been in a good place. He’s seeing pitches. He’s controlling the zone he likes to hit in. He’s getting some pitches there. He’s showing some ability to drive in some runs after not driving in any runs for the first 20-some at-bats. He’s been a solid defender. He’s playing good baseball. He’s in the moment right now, really enjoying it.”

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Kevin Gorman is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Kevin by email at [email protected] or via Twitter .

Christopher Horner | Tribune-Review
Pirates outfielder Bryan Reynolds leaves the field with manager Clint Hurdle after being injured during a game against the Diamondbacks Tuesday, April 23, 2019, at PNC Park.
Categories: Sports | Pirates
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