Ray Kremer survived 11 hits, and Kiki Cuyler had two runs and two RBIs as the Pirates dropped the Cubs, 7-2, at Forbes Field. Tomorrow, the Bucs will go for a sweep of the three-game series.
The Pirates had only five hits in the game, but six walks helped. The first of those walks went to Eddie Moore in the bottom of the first and Cuyler immediately followed by lining a ball into Forbes’ spacious center field. By the time the Cubs tracked it down, Cuyler came home with his third home run of the year and the Bucs led, 2-0.
The Cubs got a run off Kremer in the top of the third on a double by Ike McAuley and a two-out single by Sparky Adams.
The Pirates got that back and then some in the bottom of the inning with the help of some wildness from Chicago starter Percy Jones. Max Carey and Moore led off with walks, and Cuyler got hit by a pitch. After a popup, Pie Traynor drew yet another walk to force in a run. Another out later, Al Niehaus, making only his second start in two weeks, doubled in Moore and Cuyler, and Traynor scored when McAuley threw wildly to home. Niehaus was thrown out trying to score after the wild throw, but the Pirates led, 6-1.
The Pirates got their final run in the fourth. With one out, Max Carey forced Earl Smith, who’d walked. Carey stole second and third, and Jones walked Moore for a third time. With runners at the corners, the Pirates successfully pulled a delayed double steal, leaving Carey with steals of second, third and home in one inning.
Kremer had to pitch out of trouble at times, stranding two runners each in the fourth and fifth. The Cubs cut the lead to 7-2 with a run in the top of the sixth. Two singles and a walk loaded the bases, and a McAuley fly ball brought in a run, but Kremer fanned pinch hitter Mike Gonzalez to strand two more runners.
After the sixth, the Cubs managed a two-out double in the eighth and a two-out single and double in the ninth. Kremer got a ground out to strand the last two and improve his record to 3-1 and get the Pirates back to .500 at 16-16.