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Kris Bryant comes alive in Chicago Cubs 5-2 win vs Pirates

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Final. 2. 4. 5. 9

Bryant delivers 3 RBI in Cubs 5-2 win

After making his debut with the Chicago Cubs over the weekend, rookie third baseman Kris Bryant delivered a two-run RBI double in the top of the seventh inning, then came around to score himself on a catching error by Francisco Cervelli in the 5-2 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Veteran pitcher AJ Burnett was handed a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning on a RBI single by Andrew McCutchen. Burnett (0-1, 2.00 ERA) escaped the first inning as the Cubs had runners on first and second with two outs, only to strike out Miguel Montero to retire the side.

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Both starting pitchers were dealing today, as Burnett allowed only one earned run on eight hits with two walks and one strikeout. While Pittsburgh’s hurler exited after six innings, Cubs (7-5) starter Jake Arrieta worked another gem, proving that he’s the team’s true ace.

Arrieta (2-1, 1.74 ERA) held the Pirates (6-7) to only one run on four hits with no walks and seven strikeouts on his own. After Bryant gave him the lead in the top of the seventh inning, Pedro Strop was called upon to take over on the mound to start the eighth.

Bryant, who finished the game 3-for-4, tied things up at one apiece at the top of the fifth inning on a RBI single to right field. Prior to heading into today’s game, the Cubs were in a first place tie with the Cincinnati Reds in the N.L. when it came to stolen bases.

First baseman Anthony Rizzo reached base safely on a fielder’s choice in the very first inning, then stole his third base of the season with Bryant up at the plate.

Infielder Jonathan Herrera extended the Cubs lead to 5-1 on a RBI single to right field after pinch-hitter Chris Denorfia advanced to second base on a Welington Castillo groundout to shortstop. Denorfia entered the game to replace Chris Coghlan and singled to left field.

Strop sat down the Pirates in order in the eighth, setting up Zac Rosscup who would take over in the ninth. Rosscup would give up a solo home run to Starling Marte, bringing the Pirates within three runs with two outs.

Pittsburgh slugger Pedro Alvarez would ground out to end the game.

What Stood Out: 

After a shaky debut this past Friday against the San Diego Padres, Bryant appears to be getting better and better in each plate appearance. He did commit an error during the bottom half of the seventh, allowing Alvarez to reach first base safely.

His RBI double to center field looked as if it was going to be a three-run home run, but it died just before hitting the fence. Bryant is due to club his first big league home run during this road trip.

What’s Next: 

Tomorrow night will feature a showdown between both Travis Wood and Francisco Liriano. Wood (1-1, 2.31 ERA) is coming off a scoreless outing against the Reds just five days ago. In the outing against Chicago’s N.L. Central rival, Travis held Cincinnati to just three runs with two walks and seven strikeouts in seven innings of work.

Liriano (0-1, 2.08 ERA) had himself a solid outing against the Detroit Tigers but received the loss despite giving up just one earned run on four hits in six innings. Tigers’ Rajai Davis scored the only run of the game on a line-drive home run off Liriano in the sixth inning.

First pitch for tomorrow’s contest is scheduled for 6:05 pm central time, and will be aired live on both WGN and WBBM 780.

Next: Iowa Cubs Salvage Series vs Dodgers

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