Lackey deals, Rizzo leads offense as Cubs beat Pirates 7-1

Cubs Pirates to Wear Negro League Throwback Uniforms Friday

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"I respect the umpires and I never like to criticize them because I know they give their very best, but they got that one wrong".

Cubs starter Eddie Butler allowed four runs and four hits with three walks and no strikeouts through 5 2/3 innings after initially shutting down the Pirates. Cubs right-hander John Lackey (4-7, 5.26 ERA) will attempt to cool McCutchen.

Rizzo nearly led off his third straight game with a homer, losing his bid after a replay review, before helping key a six-run rally in the ninth inning that sent the Cubs over the Pittsburgh Pirates, 9-5, Friday night. His 94th and final pitch was also his fastest, a 97 miles per hour fastball that Jay couldn't get a bat on.

Gregory Polanco broke out of a 3 for 31 slump with a two-run homer and McCutchen hit his 12th home run of the season. Buccos starter Ivan Nova picked up the win with all three runs given up on six hits and a pair of bases on balls through seven innings of work.

"That was absolutely a home run", Rizzo said.

"If you don't put him there, he doesn't get pitched to at all", said Maddon.

"He was just locating", Pittsburgh shortstop Jordy Mercer said. "If I need to go harder, I feel good enough to throw".

Thomas shoots 63, trails Harman by 1 at US Open
Thomas, 24, has never won a major but gave himself a great opportunity of breaking his duck in Wisconsin with a masterful display. The soft, forgiving conditions created opportunity for major movement up the leaderboard for those players willing to take it.

Nicasio was unavailable on Saturday, and when Daniel Hudson gave up a double to rookie Ian Happ with one out in the eighth, Rivero came in and did it again.

The first four Chicago runs came against Jameson Taillon (3-2), who made his second start since returning from surgery to treat testicular cancer.

Dodgers 3, Reds 1: Left-hander Alex Wood remained unbeaten by pitching four-hit ball over eight innings, leading Los Angeles to a victory that extended their domination of Cincinnati. SS Addison Russell did not start to rest a sore right ankle.

Nova allowed Russell's home run in the sixth but stayed in the game and pumped his fists after striking out pinch-hitter Jon Jay with the tying run on in the seventh. "Let's just play with it a little bit longer and see where it takes us". C Chris Stewart was reinstated from the 10-day disabled list and C Jacob Stallings was optioned to Triple-A Indianapolis.

Nova and Rivero combined as bookends to get 26 of the 27 outs needed in a 4-3 win over the Cubs in front of a crowd of 34,383 that was nearly certainly the most enthused PNC Park had seen all season. The Pirates will look for more of the same from their center fielder and right fielder Sunday when they host the Chicago Cubs in the rubber game of a three-game series.

The Chicago Cubs have been experimenting with batting Anthony Rizzo in the leadoff spot for the last three games, which is not typical for a prolific slugger of his stature.

The Cubs entered Friday with a 32-33 record, 2.5 games behind the Milwaukee Brewers in the National League Central. Gerrit Cole (4-6, 4.54) will try to build off his last outings, a seven-inning effort that snapped a streak of four straight appearances of five innings or less.

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