Andrew McCutchen doesn’t seem to care who’s on the mound for the Chicago Cubs. He’s keeping it simple. They throw it, he hits it.
The Pirates (31-34) continued to ride the hot bat of McCutchen in this series, as he went 2-for-2, with another home run and two runs batted in as the Cubs (26-37) dropped game three of the series 4-2.
Jason Hammel (6-4, 2.81) had to work hard to get through five innings, as he allowed four runs on eleven hits. McCutchen’s home run was almost not as Chris Coghlan made a fantastic effort to rob it, only to make contact with a fan as he got leather on the ball as the Pirates jumped out 2-0.
The Cubs were able to quickly answer on Pirates starter Jason Cumpton (2-2, 6.06) as John Baker singled through the right side on the shift to cut the lead to 2-1. Darwin Barney then knocked in the tying run with a fielder’s choice RBI.
The Pirates continued to give the Cubs opportunities to get back into the game, but were unable to take advantage.
Several base running gaffes hindered the Pirates chances to widen their lead. Rookie Gregory Polanco failed to see a line drive through, and was doubled up off third in the fourth inning.
Then in the fifth, Travis Snider popped out to the catcher Baker, who threw to second to try to throw out the runner tagging from first. But Darwin Barney made a nice heads up play as Starling Marte strayed too far from third as was thrown out for the double play.
The Pirates bullpen continued to look strong, as they threw four innings of shutout baseball, and Jason Grilli closed out the ninth for his tenth save.
The start of the game was delayed 1:38 due to rain. Both scheduled pitchers made their start.