After a rain delay of 3 hours and 37 minutes, the Bucs and Cubs finally got started at 10:42 Chicago time for the final game of their wraparound series. Even though the pace of the game was pretty rapid, it didn’t end until 2:28 in Pittsburgh. It all seemed worth it, though, as the Pirates brought home an impressive and much-needed win.
Kevin Correia looked unstoppable out there. He struck out the first four batters he faced, and went on two strike out six in total. He allowed just two hits, both two Darwin Barney, over seven innings of shutout baseball. It was clear that the strikezones were expanded slightly and both teams were aggressive with their swings, but an it was an impressive start nonetheless.
The Pirates scored three runs in the third inning against Travis Wood, and that was all it took to win the game. Clint Barmes was hit by a pitch to start the inning, and after a single moved him to third, Starling Marte tripled both runners home to make it 2-0. The next batter was Jose Tabata, who drove a ball off the CF wall to plate Marte and make it 3-0.
Taking Correia out after just seven innings seemed questionable, but Jason Grilli and Joel Hanrahan each pitched a quick and easy inning to finish the game and get the Bucs out of Chicago. They returned home to Pittsburgh around the time many people were getting up for school and work, but they also returned just 2.5 games out of a playoff spot. They’re still hanging in there.
Pirates (74-72) – Cubs (58-89)
Win: Correia (11-9)
Loss: Wood (6-12)
Save: Hanrahan (36)