For a second straight night, the Pirates and Cubs started the game with a pitcher’s duel. This time it was Chad Kuhl on the mound for the Pirates and Jake Arrieta on the mound for Chicago. After a bit of a rough first inning, Chad Kuhl settled in to put together five scoreless innings with six strikeouts on only 77 pitches. It was the sixth inning where Chad Kuhl ran into trouble, and would get pulled from the game before finishing the inning. Ben Zobrist led off the bottom of the sixth inning by hitting the first pitch over the center field wall to break a scoreless tie. Kuhl followed that by walking Kyle Schwarber, before he finally got the first out of the inning by striking out Kris Bryant. A double by Cubs first basemen Anthony Rizzo, put Chicago in position to add to their 1-0 lead. Kuhl issued an intentional walk to second basemen Tommy La Stella, before allowing the RBI single to Alex Avila that chased him from the ball game. A.J. Schugel would come on in relief to allow just a sacrifice fly before finalizing Kuhl’s pitching line at five and one-third innings pitched with seven hits allowed, three earned runs, three walks with one intentional, and seven strikeouts. This would earn Chad Kuhl his tenth loss of the season on another quiet night for the Pirate offense.
Jake Arrieta did give up some hard hit balls to the Pirates batters, but with only two hits allowed in six innings pitched, with two walks and fours strikeouts, he did more than enough to earn his 14th victory of the season. The Pirates did not get on the board until Jake Arrieta departed from the ball game after six innings completed. This happened when John Jaso hit a one out solo home run off Koji Uehara in the top of the seventh inning to cut the Cubs lead to 3-1. The Pirates would not threaten again however, and after Daniel Hudson allowed an RBI double to Anthony Rizzo in the bottom of the eighth inning, the Cubs would cruise to a 4-1 victory. Wade Davis allowed one hit in between three routine outs, to log his 27th save of the season.
With the win, the Cubs improved to 71-60 on the season, while the Pirates dropped to 63-70 on the season. On the day where the Pirates management team waived Nicasio, to wave the white flag on the 2017 season, the Pirates delivered another uninspired offensive performance on the field. Tune in tomorrow night at 8:05 eastern time for game three of this three game series at Wrigley Field in Chicago, as Ivan Nova takes the mound to face Jose Quintana and the Cubs. The Pirates will try to salvage the finale of this three game series against Chicago, to avoid being swept by the Cubs for the first time in the 2017 season.