Cubs Recap: Chicago overcomes dramatic eighth to beat Bucs in extras


4. 3. 9. Final. 2

Bullpen holds it down after Arrieta exits

On the same day, Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto declared Sept. 16 to be Roberto Clemente day, the Chicago Cubs and the Pirates found themselves in another one-run battle that had some drama late in the game.

Both Jake Arrieta and A.J. Burnett went blow-for-blow, but it would be Joe Maddon‘s ace who appeared to be running away with his 20th win of the season. That is until the Pirates (87-58) tied things up at two apiece on the bases-loaded double play that touched almost every infield glove.

More from Chicago Cubs News

Arrieta (19-6, 1.96 ERA) was on a roll before an unearned run came across to score on a throwing error to first baseman Anthony Rizzo. A ball was hit back to Jake on the mound with a runner on third, but it went over the head of Rizzo.

The play cut Chicago’s (84-61) lead down to one as Gregory Polanco crossed home plate safely, but Starling Marte would be thrown out at second by Rizzo.

Kris Bryant – who started the evening at third then later moved to right field – got off to a hot start, going 3-for-3 with two doubles, a single and his 93rd RBI of his rookie campaign.

His extra base knock came during the top of the sixth inning on a double to deep left field which scored Rizzo from second. Anthony picked up his 16th stolen base prior to rounding third on Bryant’s hit.

More from Cubbies Crib

Infielder Starlin Castro extended Arrieta’s lead to two on a bunt, pushing Bryant across home plate while reaching safely on a throwing error by reliever Jared Hughes.

We’ll return to the eighth with Neil Walker reaching on an infield single when Rizzo was unable to make the toss over to Arrieta who was covering first. Pinch-runner Pedro Florimon entered the game and would find himself standing in on third after Javier Baez failed to bring down a soft liner off the bat of Francisco Cervelli.

Moments later, pinch-hitter Josh Harrison chopped a ball to Baez who threw to Montero covering home. Miguel applied the tag on Florimon for the out, but Clint Hurdle made his way from the dugout to challenge home-plate collision.

After both Chris Denorfia and Austin Jackson put together back-to-back singles in the 12th, Rizzo came through with a sacrifice fly to left field, giving the Cubs a 3-2 lead. It would also be his 90th RBI.

Arrieta will likely make his next start during the final homestand of the series. He held the Pirates to one earned run on six hits with one walk and five strikeouts.

Pedro Strop and Hector Rondon each worked a scoreless frame.

Next: Epstein expects front office to remain intact