Final Score: Pittsburgh 6, Chicago 2
Chicago, IL (Sports Network) - A.J. Burnett spun 8 1/3 innings to help the
Pittsburgh Pirates down the Chicago Cubs, 6-2, in the middle game of a three-
game set at Wrigley Field on Saturday.
Burnett (4-6) bounced back from his worst start of the season with arguably
his best outing. He surrendered just two runs on four hits with three walks
and five strikeouts to pick up his first victory in over a month.
"That was excellent rhythm off the mound," said Pirates manager Clint Hurdle
about Burnett's performance.
Pedro Alvarez and Russell Martin each had two-run home runs while Travis
Snider drove in a run for the Pirates, who have won six of eight from the Cubs
Jeff Samardzija (3-7) yielded four runs on eight hits while striking out
seven over six frames for the Cubs.
Alfonso Soriano connected on a two-run shot in the ninth to help prevent the
Cubs from being held scoreless for the second straight game.
Garrett Jones extended his hitting streak at Wrigley to 10 games with a double
into the ivy in left to start the second. Following a Martin ground out,
Alvarez connected on a hanging slider for an RBI single to put the first run
on the board.
The Bucs were back to work in the third as a Snider single to center scored
Starling Marte and Alvarez added a two-run homer to right field in the fourth
to make it 4-0.
"They come with a great approach every day," said Samardzija about the
Pirates. "They were patient with me and got some pitches to hit."
Chicago had an opportunity to get to Burnett in the sixth after putting
runners at second and third with two outs. Soriano ripped a grounder down the
third base line, but Alvarez made a spectacular backhanded stab and fired it
across the diamond to get the final out of the frame.
Martin ended a 23-game home run drought in the eighth with a two-run slam off
Cubs reliever Hector Rondon to make the lead 6-0.
The only mistake Burnett made all game came in the ninth inning when Soriano
ended his chance of an 11th career shutout with a two-run homer.
Tony Watson came in for the final two outs.
The Cubs were 0-for-6 with RISP ... Soriano has hit safely in five straight
games ... The Cubs have a 6-18 record within their division, the fewest wins
for any club within its own division ... Pirates No. 1 prospect Gerrit Cole is
scheduled to make his Major League debut Tuesday.
06/09 00:50:44 ET
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