Vance Worley pitched a quality start and Jordy Mercer and Josh Harrison homered as the Pirates beat the Cubs 5-3 Saturday night.
Worley began his start with three perfect innings and got a 1-0 lead thanks to Mercer's solo shot before giving up a two-run homer (on a breaking pitch that actually wasn't that bad) to Anthony Rizzo in the fourth. The Pirates quickly retook the lead, 3-2, on a series of singles in the fifth.
In the seventh, Gregory Polanco was called out at first after he'd grounded to shortstop, but the call was overturned, and Harrison followed with a two-run shot to right, giving the Pirates a 5-2 lead. Polanco's infield single extended his career-beginning hit streak to 11 games.
Worley was removed after allowing a two-out RBI double to Eli Whiteside in the bottom half of the inning, and Jared Hughes recorded one out before giving way to Tony Watson in the eighth. Watson and Mark Melancon pitched easy innings, restoring a bit of sanity to the ninth and clinching the Bucs' 5-3 win.
Worley was again competent, striking out four and walking one, and he continues to look like a candidate to stay in the Pirates' rotation once Gerrit Cole returns.
My apologies for the delay getting the recap up -- it was a rain-delayed game, and I was out late.