With ace A.J. Burnett on the mound, the Pittsburgh Pirates collected a 6-2 victory over the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on Saturday afternoon.
Burnett became the first Pirates pitcher to pitch more than seven innings in a game this year. He went 8 1/3 innings, giving up two earned runs while striking out five for his fourth win of the season.
For the first time in a long time Burnett got run support. A big part of that was third baseman Pedro Alvarez, who went 2 for 4 with three RBIs, including a monster two-run homer in the fourth inning. The blast was his 13th of the year.
Alvarez also got the scoring started in the second inning with a RBI single. Travis Snider would increase the Bucs’ lead to 2-0 with an run-scoring single of his own in the third.
After Alvarez’s homer in the fourth inning, it took the Pirates (37-25) until the eighth to score again. This time it was catcher Russell Martin hitting a two-run homer, his seventh of the year.
While the Pirates won today and will look to go for the sweep against the Cubs tomorrow when they send Jeff Locke to the mind, the big news of the day was that the Pirates promoted 2011 No. 1 pick Gerrit Cole, who will make his major league debut on Tuesday against the San Francisco Giants.