Starling Marte hit a solo home run in the top of the ninth inning with the game tied 1-1 to give the Pirates the lead and the eventual victory with a 2-1 score.
There wasn’t much offense to speak of for both teams the entire night. The Pirates got their first run in the top of the first inning on a solo home run by Neil Walker and then went seven innings without a run scored. That’s when Marte stepped in.
The Cubs however got their first run in the bottom of the eighth on a Donnie Murphy single into left field that scored Brian Bogusevic.
Their was just a combined three extra base hits in the game, two for the Pirates and one for the Cubs. Brian Bogusevic was the only player to record multiple hits with two.
Charlie Morton and Jeff Samardzija were the starting pitchers for their respective teams. Both starters had great outings. Morton went seven innings and gave up three hits while striking out five. Samardzija went six innings, gave up five hits, and one earned run. Mark Melancon would get the victory for the Pirates, his third of the season. Kevin Gregg got tagged with his sixth loss of the year and Jason Grilli recorded his 32nd save for the Pirates.
With the victory the Pirates clinched a playoff birth for the first time since 1992, which was when I was born, so you see the significance of this for their organization there in Pittsburgh.
These two teams will do battle again tomorrow, although there is no longer anything on the line for either team. Game time is set for 7:05 PM CDT. The probable starters for the game are, Gerrit Cole (9-7) for the Pirates and Chris Rusin (2-5) for the Cubs.