Published May 03, 2016
Pittsburgh, PA (SportsNetwork.com) - Starlin Castro homered among his three hits and drove in four runs as the Chicago Cubs rallied past the Pittsburgh Pirates for a 9-8 victory in the second of a four-game set on Tuesday.
Welington Castillo and Kris Bryant each drove in two runs, with Castillo also homering for the Cubs, who won Monday's series opener by a 5-2 score.
"I'm really proud of our guys," Chicago manager Joe Maddon said. "They all did their jobs and are playing at a very high level mentally and physically right now."
Jung Ho Kang hit a three-run double and Josh Harrison and Starling Marte each went yard for the Pirates.
Neither starter factored into the decision as Chicago's Travis Wood gave up three runs on four hits with five strikeouts over five-plus frames, while Pittsburgh's Francisco Liriano gave up three runs on three hits and fanned nine in five innings of work.
Trailing 8-5 to start the eighth, Castillo inched the Cubs closer by smacking a leadoff blast to center.
Mark Melancon (0-1) came on to pitch the ninth for Pittsburgh and immediately loaded the bases. Anthony Rizzo singled, Jorge Soler doubled to center and Bryant walked before Castro drove in two runs by chopping a grounder over a leaping Harrison at third base into left field to tie the game.
Two batters later, Bryant scored to put Chicago ahead 9-8 on Castillo's ground out to second.
Edwin Jackson (1-0) earned the win by tossing a perfect eighth inning and Hector Rondon produced a 1-2-3 ninth inning for his third save of the season.
"We're not going to overreact," Pittsburgh manager Clint Hurdle said "We had a game that we normally put away, but we didn't put it away."
The Cubs got off to a good start as Dexter Fowler worked a leadoff walk and Rizzo was hit by a pitch. Two batters later, Bryant smacked an RBI double to deep right for a 1-0 lead.
Harrison got the run right back for the Pirates by opening the home half with a blast to right-center field and Marte added to the lead in similar fashion with one out in the second for a 2-1 score.
In the third, Fowler led off with a walk, moved to second on a Rizzo single, took third on Soler's fly out and tied the game after Pirates first baseman Corey Hart misplayed Bryant's grounder. Castro followed with a run-scoring base hit for a 3-2 Cubs lead.
Radhames Liz replaced Liriano to start the sixth and was greeted by Castro, who smacked an 0-1 fastball to center for a two-run advantage.
The Pirates used a three-run sixth to vault ahead. After Neil Walker and Andrew McCutchen walked to start the frame, Pedro Alvarez grounded into a force out that left men on first and third. Marte scored with a grounder into left and two batters later, Francisco Cervelli plated two runs with a single up the middle for a 5-4 game.
Soler scored on Harrison's fielding error to tie the game in the top of the seventh, but the Pirates responded with the bases loaded in the bottom half after Kang cleared them with a double to deep center.
Cubs second baseman Addison Russell struck out three times and finished 0- for-5 in his MLB debut ... Rizzo has been hit by a pitch six times this month, setting the franchise record for the month of April ... Soler extended his hitting streak to eight games ... Marte has homered four times in his last five games ... The Pirates have homered in five straight games.