The Pirates lost their fifth game in a row following a rain delay that lasted nearly two hours. Given the nature of the loss, a rain out would have served the Bucs better on Friday night. Pittsburgh would go on to lose 1-0 for the second night in a row in a game where the offense failed to back up another strong pitching performance.
Trevor Williams was stellar, allowing one run and four hits over seven innings of work. He also pitched around two Pirates’ errors in the 5th and 6th innings. That one run came on a solo home run by Kyle Schwarber in the top of the 2nd inning.
Much like Thursday night’s contest, the run support for Trevor Williams was nowhere to be found. The Pirates’ hitters recorded seven hits, each one of them a single. This anemic showing has extended their streak of innings without an XBH to 23.
To make matters worse, the Pirates got into seven double plays. The double plays occurred in the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 6th, 7th, 8th, and 9th innings.
The double plays in the 8th in 9th innings were particularly annoying.
Colin Moran delivered a one out single to left in the 8th inning. The Pirates turned to their new pinch runner and late inning defensive specialist, Kevin Newman to run for Moran. Adam Frazier lined out to Javier Baez who doubled off Newman before he could get back to first. Newman’s first major league at bat remains elusive.
Then, the Pirates formulated something that started to look like a scoring opportunity in the 9th inning. Dickerson led the inning off with a single to center. After Marte struck out on a pitch in another Zip Code, Polanco worked a walk to place runners at first and second with one out and David Freese stepping to the plate. Unfortunately, Freese hit a chopper down the third base line, leading David Bote to the bag for an easy double play for what was a fitting ending to the ball game.
Final Score: Cubs 1, Pirates 0
W: Hamels (8-9) L: Williams (10-9) SV: Chavez (2)
Pittsburgh will go again on Saturday night as Joe Musgrove takes on Chicago’s Tyler Chatwood in game three of the series.