Joshua Palacios’ three-run home run put an exclamation point on a seven-run fourth inning for the Pittsburgh Pirates (71-81) against the Chicago Cubs (79-73) at Wigley Field on Wednesday night.
The offense continued to pour it on throughout the game, and the Pirates went on to defeat the Cubs 13-7.
Steele (16-5) held the Pirates scoreless through three innings, but the first six Pirates’ batters of the fourth inning all singled, the final of which knocked the left-hander out of the game.
Henry Davis drove in a pair with a single to right inning and was sandwiched between Jack Suwinski and Liover Peguero run-scoring singles, the latter of which served as the knockout blow.
Palacios’ homer came off of Cubs reliever José Cuas, who entered the game in relief of Steele.
The following inning, Jared Triolo connected on a 420-foot solo home run, the second of his career, to put the Pirates ahead 8-1.
On the mound for the Pirates, Mitch Keller held the Cubs to one run in four innings, but he ran into a world of trouble in the fifth.
Christopher Morel hit a solo homer to leadoff the inning. After Chicago loaded the bases against Keller, Ian Happ whacked a grand slam to right center, making the score 8-6.
Keller (13-9) struck out Dansby Swanson looking in the second inning, which was his 200th strikeout of the season.
To add some insurance in the sixth, Bryan Reynolds bounced into a fielder’s choice, allowing Jason Delay to score. With two outs in the inning, Connor Joe belted a two-run homer to left, the third long ball of the night for the Pirates.
The Pirates weren’t done adding on, however. With the bases loaded in the ninth, Triolo drove in another run with a base hit and Peguero plated one on a fielder’s choice.
After the Cubs cut their deficit two two runs on Happ’s grand slam, Cody Bellinger doubled off the wall in right center with one out. Keller was able to retire the next two and keep the Pirates out in front.
Star of the Game
With so many contributors, the entire Pirates’ offense takes home the honor from this one.
Stat to Know
Keller became the sixth different Pirates’ pitcher with 200+ strikeouts in a season. It was the 10th instance of a Pirates’ pitcher reaching 200 strikeouts in a season and the first since Francisco Liriano (205) and Gerrit Cole (202) in 2015.
- With three more hits, Ke’Bryan Hayes has multiple hits in four out of his last five games. Over that stretch, he’s hitting .455 (10 for 22).
- In addition to Hayes, Joe and Triolo also had three hits and Palacios recorded a pair of hits on the night.
- Five different Pirates drove in multiple RBIs — Palacios (three), Joe, Triolo, Davis and Peguero (all had two).
- Happ has now reached base in 58 consecutive starts against the Pirates.
- This was the Pirates first win at Wigley field since May 18, 2022 . They had dropped six in a row since
The Pirates and Cubs will wrap up their three-game series on Thursday night in the final meeting between these two teams this season. Johan Oviedo (8-14, 4.27 ERA) will pitch for Pittsburgh and will be opposite Kyle Hendricks (6-7, 3.77 ERA). First pitch: 7:40 ET.