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Cubs at Pirates — 4/11/21

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MLB: Pittsburgh Pirates at Cincinnati Reds David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

Chicago Cubs (4-4) vs. Pittsburgh Pirates (2-6) - Sunday, April 11 @ 1:05 p.m.

Stadium: PNC Park, Pittsburgh

TV: AT&T SportsNet Pittsburgh

Radio: 93.7 The Fan

SB Nation Cubs site: Bleed Cubbie Blue

Starting Pitchers

Cubs: Trevor Williams - RHP - (1-0) – 3.00 ERA - 6 total Ks

Pirates: JT Brubaker - RHP - (0-0) – 2.25 ERA – 4 total Ks

Probable Starting Lineups (subject to last-minute changes)

Cubs

1. Ian Happ – CF

2. Willson Contreras – C

3. Anthony Rizzo – 1B

4. Kris Bryant – 3B

5. Joc Pederson – LF

6. Javier Baez – SS

7. Jason Heyward – RF

8. Eric Sogard – 2B

9. Trevor Williams – P

Pirates

1. Adam Frazier– 2B

2. Phillip Evans – 3B

3. Bryan Reynolds – LF

4. Colin Moran – 1B

5. Kevin Newman – SS

6. Gregory Polanco – RF

7. Jacob Stallings – C

8. Dustin Fowler – CF

9. JT Brubaker – P

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The Pittsburgh Pirates will go after their second straight win today after snapping a six-game losing streak Saturday with an 8-2 spanking of the Cubs.

JT Brubaker will start for Pittsburgh against former Pirate Trevor Williams.

In Saturday night’s win, starter Mitch Keller turned in a solid effort, albeit over only five innings, as he surrendered five hits and one earned run while walking just one and striking out seven.

Pirates manager Derek Shelton said Keller’s ability to pitch out of trouble in the second was the turning point in his outing. The Cubs, leading 1-0, had a runner at second with one out and Keller fell behind David Bote 3-0. But Keller came back to retire Bote on a grounder to third, then struck out Cubs starter Zach Davies.

Shelton said in a postgame press conference televised by AT&T SportsNet that Keller’s outing in general was a positive sign “but that (Bote) at-bat was really a positive sign. Mitch did a nice job.”

Keller said it felt great to get his first win. “I just let it all out there and was filling it up as much as I could,” he said. “That was the game plan going in – just use my fastball and see where that gets us. I stuck to the plan and it worked.”

Saturday’s win was fueled by a seven-run second inning that saw 12 men come to the plate. The Pirates finished with nine hits, including two each from Adam Frazier, Phillip Evans and Colin Moran.

Shelton likes what he’s seeing from both Moran and Evans. Moran, he said, is having the club’s best and most consistent at-bats. “He’s not really going out of his hitting zones,” he said. “We’ve seen that through the first seven games.”

Brubaker will be making his second start of the season for the Pirates. He gave up one run in four innings and struck out six against Cincinnati last week.

Williams had the more impressive 2021 season debut, as he carried a perfect game into the sixth inning of his start against the Brewers Monday.

Williams lost his bid for perfection in the sixth when Omar Narvaez bounced a single to left, finding a hole in the infield shift.

Overall, Williams went six-plus innings, striking out six and walking two. He was charged with a pair of runs when Narvaez homered off reliever Jason Adam.