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Burnett, Alvarez, Martin key 6-2 victory over Cubs


The Pirates beat the Cubs 6-2 Saturday thanks to an 8.1-inning outing from A.J. Burnett and two-run homers from both Pedro Alvarez and Russell Martin.

The Bucs scored their first run of the game in the second, when Garrett Jones hit a leadoff double and Alvarez singled him home. Then in the third, Starling Marte singled, stole second, and came home on a base hit by Travis Snider.

In the fourth, Martin led off with a walk, and then Jeff Samardzija left a splitter up for Alvarez to smash over the right-field wall in Wrigley and completely out of the stadium.

With two outs in the bottom of the sixth, the Cubs had two men on when Alfonso Soriano hit a grounder down the line. Alvarez dove to get it, then made a bullet of a throw to get Soriano and keep the Pirates up 4-0. The Pirates would add to that lead in the eighth when Andrew McCutchen walked and Russell Martin hit his 100th career homer.

In the ninth, Soriano hit a two-run homer that finally got Burnett pulled from the game. But the Pirates were still up four, and Tony Watson finished the game without incident. Burnett finished with five strikeouts and three walks while throwing 112 pitches, 77 for strikes.

After winning their last two games, the Pirates are back to being 12 games above .500.