Pirates’ Rowdy Tellez defends struggling David Bednar after facing boos: ‘Don’t do that here’

Pirates closer David Bednar had a rough outing on Tuesday as he blew another save opportunity — his third time in four chances — in a 5-3 loss to the Tigers

One of his teammates, though, was there to support him publicly.

The rough start to the 2024 season for Bednar has left the Pittsburgh faithful feeling a little bit restless with the hometown star, booing him on Tuesday after he gave up four runs in the top of the ninth.

But Pirates first baseman Rowdy Tellez had something to say regarding the treatment of the two-time All-Star closer inside the Pirates home ballpark. 

Tellez, walking up to the media scrum around Bednar after Tuesday’s game, backed up his closer.

“This is the pride of Pittsburgh to everybody. We don’t do that out here,” Tellez said about the booing. 

Rowdy Tellez supported David Bednar after the loss.
Rowdy Tellez supported David Bednar after the loss.

“We’re a good team, we’re winning for a reason,” Tellez continued. “We’re going to get our man back on track. But what happened today was, I think, unacceptable. We, as a group in Pittsburgh, gotta be better. He’s an All-Star for a reason, and we just have to be better. That being said, he’s a two-time All-Star.”

Bednar clearly appreciated the gesture after Tellez walked away from the cameras. 

“Seeing these guys have my back is huge,” Bednar said. 

Pittsburgh Pirates relief pitcher David Bednar walks to the dugout after being pulled from the team's baseball game against the Detroit Tigers in the ninth inning in Pittsburgh, Tuesday, April 9, 2024.
David Bednar walks to the dugout after being pulled in the ninth inning of the Pirates’ 5-3 loss to the Tigers. AP

The Pirates closer grew up in the Pittsburgh suburb of Mars — a 30-minute drive from PNC Park — and had largely endeared himself to the hometown fans after he was acquired in a January 2021 trade with the Padres. 

He has 62 saves with a 2.30 ERA over his four years in a Pirates uniform, representing the Pirates at the 2022 and 2023 All-Star Games.

But this beginning season for Bednar has been rocky, with blown saves against the Marlins on March 31 and the Orioles on Saturday. 

The issues persisted on Tuesday when a 3-1 Pirates lead turned into a deficit, as the righty was only able to retire just one of the six batters he faced. 

Nevertheless, the Pirates are still off to one of their best starts in years with a 9-3 record.


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