Bucs snap skid, hold on late to top CubsSep 16, 2012 - 12:44 AM
The Cubs scored twice off the Pirates closer and had the winning run on second base before Hanrahan struck out Dave Sappelt to close out the much-needed win.
Starling Marte doubled, tripled, drove in a run and scored twice for the Pirates, who were mired in a 5-17 slump since winning a 19-inning marathon in St. Louis on Aug. 19.
Wandy Rodriguez helped end the swoon, which had dropped Pittsburgh three games back in the race for the last NL wild-card spot, with a quality start. Rodriguez (11-13) scattered nine hits and three runs -- one earned -- over six innings to earn the win.
"Today I didn't have my best stuff," Rodriguez said. "I used a lot of my 2- seamer because it's the only pitch I had that I felt comfortable. When I used my curveball, I missed a lot today."
Jason Berken (0-1), making his first big-league start since Oct. 2, 2009, was touched for six runs -- just two earned -- on eight hits in four innings of work for the Cubs, who had won six of seven coming into the second meeting of this four-game series.
"He couldn't really find the strike zone," Cubs manager Dale Sveum said of Berken.
Hanrahan, in his first save opportunity since Aug. 17, put the first two hitters on in the ninth and gave up a one-out, RBI single to Alfonso Soriano to make it a 7-5 game.
Starlin Castro flew out to deep right-center for the second out before consecutive walks to Welington Castillo and Luis Valbuena forced in a run.
Hanrahan shook off the rust just in time, as he got Sappelt to swing through a 2-2 pitch to pick up his 35th save.
Marte scored on Garrett Jones' sacrifice fly in the first inning, and three straight singles to start the second, the last a line drive off the left-field wall by Rod Barajas, made it 2-0.
McCutchen took Berken deep for his 28th home run leading off the third, and after Anthony Rizzo's RBI single in the bottom half, the Pirates tacked on three runs -- all with two outs -- in the fourth.
Barmes, who reached on Josh Vitters' throwing error, scored on a triple by Marte, who trotted home on Travis Snider's base hit. Snider moved to second on McCutchen's single and crossed the plate when Jones doubled to left.
The Cubs scored twice in the fifth, one coming on Soriano's run-scoring base hit.
Alberto Cabrera served up Barmes' homer to left field in the seventh, and the Jason Grilli allowed an RBI single to Luis Valbuena in the home eighth.
Rodriguez has recorded a 1.83 ERA (seven earned run in 34 1/3 innings) over his last six appearances ... The Pirates had dropped 10 straight road games ... Pirates second baseman Neil Walker returned to the starting lineup for the first time since Aug. 26 and went 0-for-5. He was sidelined with lower back tightness ... Berken was claimed off waivers from the Orioles last week. He has spent the majority of this season with Triple-A Norfolk, going 5-6 with a 3.50 ERA in 26 starts.
- PITTSBURGH: 7
Sep 15 4:33 PM
- Jeff Samardzija is Pinch-running for Welington Castillo.
Pirates 7, Cubs 6 Bot 9, 2 OutsSep 15 4:32 PM
- Alfonso Soriano single to left scored Joe Mather. On the play, Darwin Barney advances to second. Runners on first and second with one out and Starlin Castro due up.
Pirates 7, Cubs 5 Bot 9, 1 OutSep 15 4:22 PM
- David DeJesus is Pinch-hitting for Alberto Cabrera.
Pirates 7, Cubs 4 Bot 8, 2 OutsSep 15 4:02 PM
- Clint Barmes two-out, solo Home Run (7) to left. Rod Barajas due up.
Pirates 7, Cubs 3 Top 7, 2 OutsSep 15 3:17 PM
- Alfonso Soriano single to right scored Darwin Barney. On the play, Anthony Rizzo advances to third. Runners on first and third with two outs and Starlin Castro due up.
Pirates 6, Cubs 3 Bot 5, 2 OutsSep 15 2:50 PM
- Joe Mather grounded into a fielder's choice, short to second scored Dave Sappelt. Brett Jackson out at second. Runner on first with one out and Darwin Barney due up.
Pirates 6, Cubs 2 Bot 5, 1 OutSep 15 2:44 PM
- Garrett Jones double to left scored Travis Snider. On the play, Andrew McCutchen advances to third. Runners on second and third with two outs and Neil Walker due up.
Pirates 6, Cubs 1 Top 4, 2 OutsSep 15 2:21 PM
- Travis Snider single to right scored Starling Marte. Runner on first with two outs and Andrew McCutchen due up.
Pirates 5, Cubs 1 Top 4, 2 OutsSep 15 2:19 PM
- Starling Marte triple to center scored Clint Barmes. Runner on third with two outs and Travis Snider due up.
Pirates 4, Cubs 1 Top 4, 2 OutsSep 15 2:17 PM
- Alfonso Soriano flied out to center to end the inning.
Pirates 3, Cubs 1 End 3Sep 15 2:08 PM
- Andrew McCutchen lead-off Home Run (28) to left-center. Garrett Jones due up.
Pirates 3, Cubs 0 Top 3, 0 OutsSep 15 1:49 PM
- Wandy Rodriguez sacrifice bunt to pitcher. On the play, Rod Barajas advances to second. Runners on second and third with one out and Starling Marte due up.
Pirates 2, Cubs 0 Top 2, 1 OutSep 15 1:35 PM
- Garrett Jones sacrifice fly to left scored Starling Marte. Runner on first with two out and Neil Walker due up.
Pirates 1, Cubs 0 Top 1, 2 OutsSep 15 1:16 PM
- PITTSBURGH: 0
Top 1, 0 Outs
Sep 15 1:11 PM
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