Olivares, Gonzales homer to lead Pirates to 5-4 win over Cubs

CHICAGO — Edward Olivares and Nick Gonzales homered, and the Pittsburgh Pirates beat the Chicago Cubs 5-4 on Thursday night.

Olivares hit a two-run homer in the first inning. He also doubled and scored in the sixth against Justin Steele (0-1) to make it 5-3.

Gonzales hit a solo drive in the fourth, and Jared Jones (3-4) struck out seven in six solid innings. Colin Holderman gave up a sacrifice fly to Christopher Morel in the eighth, but the Pirates opened the four-game series on a winning note after losing six of eight. They dropped two of three to the Cubs in Pittsburgh over the weekend.

Jones was charged with three runs and seven hits. The 22-year-old right-hander has gone at least five innings and allowed three runs or fewer in each of his nine career starts.

Aroldis Chapman worked the seventh. Holderman hit Seiya Suzuki in the left arm leading off the eighth and catcher Yasmani Grandal threw wildly to first after fielding Cody Bellinger’s roller, putting runners on second and third. Morel then cut it to 5-4 with a sacrifice fly before Ian Happ struck out. Michael Busch walked, but Nick Madrigal grounded out to end the inning.

David Bednar came on in the ninth for his ninth save in 12 chances.

The slumping Ian Happ hit a solo homer for Chicago in the second after being held out of the previous two games.

Steele, coming off a shaky outing at Pittsburgh on Saturday, gave up five runs and six hits in 5 2/3 innings. The left-hander struck out seven and walked one in his third start back from a strained left hamstring.


Cubs: 2B Nico Hoerner (sore hamstring) was out of the lineup for the third straight game. He went through a more normal pregame routine after doing nothing the previous day, and manager Craig Counsell hoped to have him back on Friday.


Prized RHP Paul Skenes (0-0, 6.75 ERA) makes his second start for Pittsburgh after a promising — and uneven — major league debut against the Cubs on Saturday. Skenes struck out seven over four-plus innings, and the Pirates won 10-9. RHP Kyle Hendricks (0-3, 10.04 ERA) starts for Chicago.


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