Pittsburgh at Chicago

Cubs 7, Pirates 5

CBSSports.com wire reports

CHICAGO -- Anthony Rizzo congratulated Jason Hammel for his first National League victory after the Chicago Cubs topped the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Only, it wasn't.

Not even Hammel's first this season.

Hammel threw seven strong innings, Rizzo tied a career high with four hits, and Chicago won 7-5 on Wednesday night despite allowing five solo home runs. But Rizzo apparently forgot about Hammel's victory last week -- or the 27 the veteran right-hander had with Colorado.

"Just make sure that everybody knows that Rizzo was not there with us in Pittsburgh last week," a joking Hammel said. "It's a good one. It's a good one.

"I didn't know I didn't win at all in Colorado, either."

Signed to a one-year, $6 million contract over the offseason, Hammel (2-0) won his Cubs debut when he beat the Pirates in Pittsburgh. He got off to another good start in this one, retiring the first 12 batters until Pedro Alvarez's first home run of the game tied it to start the fifth. Hammel allowed three runs and three hits -- all solo home runs -- while striking out six.

Rizzo had his career-best fourth straight multi-hit game, Mike Olt and Junior Lake hit back-to-back home runs in the fifth against Wandy Rodriguez (0-2). Emilio Bonifacio, who entered leading the majors with 17 hits and a .515 batting average, was 2 for 5. Bonifacio had two runs for an offense that has scored 21 runs in its past three games after getting eight in its first five.

"We had some well-struck balls," Cubs manager Rick Renteria said. "They did there at the end, too, so it was a good night to hit."

The Pirates found that out as well on a night where the wind was blowing steadily out.

Alvarez and Russell Martin homered twice for the Pirates, each getting their second in the ninth off Pedro Strop, and Travis Snider also went deep. It was Alvarez's second multihomer game of the season and ninth of his career, and it the eighth of Martin's career, but Pittsburgh only had one hit besides its five solo home runs.

"Well, we're not giving up," Martin said. "We're still fighting. That's kind of in our DNA. No matter what the score is, we're going to give our best effort. We're aware some days we're going to get beat, but we're never really going to cave in. Today they were better than us."

Once again, the Cubs were better than Rodriguez, whom Hammel and Chicago beat for the second time.

Rodriguez went five innings, giving up four runs and nine hits, keeping the Pirates from clinching their third straight series win to start the season, something they haven't done since 1992.

Rodriguez missed most of 2013 with a left forearm injury and Pirates manager Clint Hurdle called his performance an "optimistic outing."

"You've got to remember how long he's been away from the mound," Hurdle said. "He feels healthy. The first pitch strikes were good. A little more consistency and location, just execution at times."

The Cubs' offensive execution was better. Other than Rizzo's congratulations to Hammel.

"I was excited. We had a great atmosphere in here after the game," Rizzo said. "He pitched his tail off. We got him the W, so it's nice. He's off to a great 2-0 start."


Bonifacio's hot start has given Renteria an easy choice to lead off. "Typically, if you can have a leadoff guy that you can slot in, it's really big," Renteria said. ... Cubs OF Justin Ruggiano's RBI double was his first hit of the season. He entered the game 0-for-11. ... The Cubs scored three times in the sixth, and the third came when Lake was originally called out at first on a double-play grounder, but Renteria challenged the call by umpire Mark Carlson, getting it overturned and allowing Rizzo to score. ... Pirates LHP Jeff Locke (right oblique) went six innings and allowed two runs and five hits while striking out 10 and walking one in a rehab outing at Single-A Bradenton.

Copyright 2015 by STATS LLC. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC is strictly prohibited.
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Pittsburgh Pirates
Starling Marte, LF4000011 .273
Travis Snider, RF4111001 .250
Andrew McCutchen, CF4000010 .233
Pedro Alvarez, 3B4222000 .233
Russell Martin, C4222010 .292
Neil Walker, 2B3000110 .226
Travis Ishikawa, 1B4000031 .238
Jordy Mercer, SS3000020 .154
Wandy Rodriguez, P1000000 .500
   a-Josh Harrison, PH1000010 .000
   Jeanmar Gomez, P0000000 .000
   b-Jose Tabata, PH1010000 .308
   Justin Wilson, P0000000 .000
a-struck out for Rodriguez in the 6th
b-singled for Gomez in the 8th
HR - Travis Snider (1, Hammel), Pedro Alvarez 2 (4, Hammel), Russell Martin 2 (2, Hammel)
RBI - Travis Snider (2), Pedro Alvarez 2 (7), Russell Martin 2 (6)
2-OUT RBI - Russell Martin (2)
Team LOB - 2
DP - Ishikawa-Mercer
Pittsburgh Pirates
Wandy Rodriguez (L,0-2) 5944362 5.73
Jeanmar Gomez 2433110 7.71
Justin Wilson 1100010 0.00
IBB - Barney by Wandy Rodriguez
Pitches-Strikes - Wandy Rodriguez 99-60, Jeanmar Gomez 37-25, Justin Wilson 14-10
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Wandy Rodriguez 6-3, Jeanmar Gomez 3-1, Justin Wilson 2-0
Batters Faced - Wandy Rodriguez 27, Jeanmar Gomez 10, Justin Wilson 4
Chicago (N.L.) Cubs
Emilio Bonifacio, CF5220012 .500
Starlin Castro, SS5010002 .294
Justin Ruggiano, RF4111131 .067
Anthony Rizzo, 1B5241011 .375
Mike Olt, 3B5123004 .158
Junior Lake, LF4112010 .273
Welington Castillo, C3020111 .167
Darwin Barney, 2B2010201 .214
Jason Hammel, P2000013 .000
   a-Ryan Kalish, PH1000001 .167
   Hector Rondon, P0000000 .000
   Pedro Strop, P0000000 .000
a-grounded into a double play for Hammel in the 7th
2B - Emilio Bonifacio (3, Gomez), Justin Ruggiano (1, Rodriguez), Anthony Rizzo 2 (2, Gomez), Welington Castillo (1, Rodriguez)
HR - Mike Olt (2, Rodriguez), Junior Lake (1, Rodriguez)
SH - Jason Hammel (1)
RBI - Justin Ruggiano (1), Anthony Rizzo (5), Mike Olt 3 (4), Junior Lake 2 (2)
2-OUT RBI - Mike Olt 2 (2), Junior Lake (1)
Team LOB - 10
Chicago (N.L.) Cubs
Jason Hammel (W,2-0) 7333163 2.63
Hector Rondon 1100020 0.00
Pedro Strop 1222022 5.79
Pitches-Strikes - Jason Hammel 96-60, Hector Rondon 19-12, Pedro Strop 15-11
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jason Hammel 8-7, Hector Rondon 1-0, Pedro Strop 1-0
Batters Faced - Jason Hammel 25, Hector Rondon 4, Pedro Strop 5
Game Information
Attendance - 28247
Game Time - 2:41
Temperature - 59
Umpires - Home - Laz Diaz, First Base - Mark Carlson, Second Base - Scott Barry, Third Base - Jeff Nelson