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Pirates Hold On To Avoid Sweep

The Pittsburgh Pirates and Chicago Cubs wrapped up a three-game series at Wrigley Field on Wednesday night.  Pittsburgh looked awful in the first two games of the series, but were able to put it together in all three phases of the game to pick up a 3-2 win.

Chicago jumped out to a quick one run lead in the first inning when Ian Happ hit a solo homer to left center field.  The Pirates tied the game in the third when Michael Chavis hit an RBI single to right center that scored Ke’Bryan Hayes.  Later in the inning they took a one run lead on a Daniel Vogelbach single to left center to bring home Bryan Reynolds.

That lead did not last long, as the Cubs tied the game at two in the fourth inning.  Frank Schwindel hit an RBI single to left.  The Pirates took the lead for good when Jack Suwinski homered to center field.  After that it would be up to the pitching to hold the lead.

Pittsburgh used an opener for the second time in three days tonight.  This time it would be Wil Crowe starting the game.  He would pitch two innings, allowing one run on one hit with three strikeouts and one walk.  Mitch Keller entered the game in the third and earned his first win of the season.  Keller worked 2.2 innings and gave up one run on three hits to go with four strikeouts and two walks.

Chicago starter Drew Smyly allowed all three Pirates run during his 4.1 innings on the bump.  He gave up six hits to go along with five strikeouts and one walk.  The Cubs used five pitchers over the final 4.2 innings.  They would allow three hits, walk one, and strikeout six strikeouts.  After Keller was pulled from the game Duane Underwood Jr. pitched 2.1 innings and struck out two and walked one.  David Bednar picked up his eighth save of the year after striking out two and allowing one hit during two innings on the bump.

It was great to see the Pittsburgh offense show some life tonight.  Though they only scored three runs, they did collect nine hits, which for their sake is an explosion.  They will have an off day tomorrow before heading home to PNC Park where they will begin a three-game series with the St. Louis Cardinals on Friday.

Record vs. Cubs:  5-4

Record vs. N.L. Central:  9-16

Record on the Road:  7-11

Overall Record:  16-21


As Always…

Let’s Go Bucs!

Chad Carlson

Co-Editor of Fans From The Stands, Pirates' Beat Writer For Armchair Report, Sports writer for AMN, SteelTownRock And Music City Encore Editor