PITTSBURGH — The Bucs’ batters finally found their swing.
After being held to only 14 runs over a six-game losing streak, the Pirates erupted in the second inning on Saturday, scoring seven times to fuel an 8-2 win over the Cubs at PNC Park.
The Pirates loaded the bases in quick order with a walk by Colin Moran, a double by Erik Gonzalez and a walk by Gregory Polanco. Jacob Stallings, who said before the game he’s felt good at the plate but hasn’t seen the results, saw the payoff with a two-run single.
Adam Frazier hit an RBI double, Bryan Reynolds hit a two-run double and then Moran came back up once more to smack a two-run single to cap the outburst.
The cushion was more than enough to support Mitch Keller, who had one of the best all-around outings of his career. Keller cleaned up his control issues to strike out seven batters while only walking Ian Happ to lead off the game. He also reached back and hit 97.5 mph on the gun in the fourth inning, his fastest pitch since Sept. 17, 2019.