Chicago crushed Pittsburgh 17-8 on Friday at Wrigley Field, and the visiting team’s poor pitching was a big reason why.
Cubs catcher Willson Contreras went yard twice while Nicholas Castellanos, Anthony Rizzo and Nico Hoerner each notched one home run apiece.
Chicago totaled five home runs in all and it was not a good night for Pirates starter Steven Brault.
Brault became the first pitcher in MLB’s Live Ball Era to allow 10 earned runs and five home runs in three innings or less.
He forked up eight hits in just 2 2/3 innings before being relieved.
Pittsburgh’s offense wasn’t bad though, as it tallied 13 hits from eight different batters, it just wasn’t enough to overcome the Cubs’ onslaught.
The Pirates remain far from playoff contention with a 65-83 record while the Cubs are second in the National League Central with a 79-68 mark.
Chicago is just holding on to the NL’s second wild card spot.
The Mets and Brewers both lost their Friday matchups, giving the Cubs a little more breathing room as they look to remain in the hunt. Chicago is up a half game on Milwaukee and three on the Mets for the second wild-card spot. Philadelphia, which is also in pursuit of that spot, was idle Friday.
Studs of the Night
Rookie Gavin Lux homered and drove in three runs as the Dodgers topped the Mets 9-2.
Bo Bichette went 3 for 5 and scored two runs for Toronto in its 6-5 win against the Yankees.
Duds of the Night
Atlanta’s Tyler Flowers was hitless in five at-bats in his team’s 5-0 victory against the Nationals.
Detroit’s Miguel Cabrera went 0 for 4 in the Tigers’ 6-2 loss to the Orioles.
This isn’t easy to pull off.
Twins (89-57) at Indians (86-61) 1:10 p.m. ET — Cleveland is right outside the playoff picture and just 3 1/2 games back from American League Central-leading Minnesota. The Indians are on the brink of a postseason appearance so beating their toughest divisional rival could be huge for them as they look to build momentum.