In a season that is seemingly lost in terms of divisional contention, the focus of this Pittsburgh Pirates is turning towards the future and potential young stars. Oneil Cruz and Bligh Madris stole the show in Monday night’s 12-1 rout of Chicago Cubs at PNC Park.
Cruz made his season debut on Monday, impressing all with his defense and offense throughout the night, looking every bit the potential star. He went 2-5 with four RBIs while making some head turning plays on the basepaths and on defense.
Not to be outdone was Madris, who made his MLB debut on Monday, going 3-5 with two RBIs to help lead the Bucs to a comfortable, “feel-good” victory.
JT Brubaker (1-7) earned his first victory of the season, giving up five hits and three walks with five strikeouts in six innings.
The Pirates took control of the game with three runs in the second inning. A two run single by Madris made it 2-0, followed by a sacrifice fly by Hoy Park. A four-run third inning followed, highlighted by Cruz’s three run double to make it 7-0.
A five-run seventh inning made this one a laugher. A two run double by Daniel Vogelbach made it 9-1, and a RBI single by Cruz, a double by Tyler Heineman, and another sac fly by Park completed the scoring for Pittsburgh.
Of course, it’s always nice to get a win, especially at home, and against a divisional opponent. But Monday night was about a bit more than that. Seeing guys like Cruz and Madris in the big league uniform bring some hope for the future, specifically seeing them succeed at this level, even if it was just one night.
The Pirates will look to win their third game in a row on Tuesday when they take the field for the second game of this series. Roansy Contreras will take the mound for Pittsburgh against Matt Swarmer for Chicago.
Record vs. Cubs: 6-4
Record vs. N.L. Central: 11-22
Record at Home: 15-19
Overall Record: 27-39
Let’s Go Bucs!