The Chicago Cubs lost for the twelfth time this season to the Pittsburgh Pirates by a score of 8-2.
Pittsburgh was coming off their first playoff-clinching game in twenty two years on Tuesday and the team showed no signs of slowing down against the lovable losers at Wrigley Field Tuesday night.
The Pirates were able to jump on the Cubs pitching staff and get to their ever rotating bullpen in the third inning. Chicago Cubs starter Chris Rusin was roughed up for the second start in a row, finishing with 2 1/3 innings pitched, surrendering six hits and four runs with one walk and a strikeout.
Rusin picked up the loss on the evening falling to 2-6 with a 3.93 ERA for the season. His rookie counterpart, Gerrit Cole, took the bump for Pittsburgh and picked up his tenth win of the season and improved his ERA to 3.22.
Cole was hit around a little bit in his six innings of work, surrendering seven hits and allowing two earned runs while striking out six and walking only one.
The Pittsburgh offense began the night in the second inning with a Pedro Alvarez ground rule double to right plating Marlon Byrd who singled to begin the inning. Alvarez would score from second an at-bat later on an Gerrit Cole single, which also scored Gabby Sanchez from third.
The pirates would take a 3-0 lead into the third inning when starting shortstop Jordy Mercer hit a solo homer run to begin the inning extending their lead 4-0.
The hopeful Chicago comeback was ended in the fifth inning when Pedro Alvarez struck again with a two-RBI double scoring Andrew McCutchen and Marlon Byrd giving the Pirates a 6-1 lead.
Starling Marte and Andrew McCutchen would deliver RBIs in the top of the eighth to end the scoring on the evening, bringing the game to its final score of 8-2.
Chicago falls to 65-93 on the season and lost eleven of their last fourteen heading into the series finale Wednesday afternoon. With this win the Pirates improve to 91-67 and are two games back in the National League Central Division with their eyes on a division title.
The series finale will be played at 1:20 P.M. CT in Chicago, IL at Wrigley Field.
Chicago Cubs – Jake Arrieta (3-2, 3.94 ERA) This will be Arrieta’s last start of the season and is coming off of a seven inning three hit start against the Brewers.
Pittsburgh Pirates – Francisco Liriano (16-7, 2.88 ERA) Liriano has won both of his previous starts at Wrigley Field surrendering only six hits and two runs in 16 innings.