The Pirates continued a two-week stretch of excellent starting pitching on Saturday against the Cubs, as Paul Maholm pitched a complete-game three-hit shutout. The Bucs' offense, which had struggled badly with Maholm on the hill before Saturday, responded scoring 10 runs on four homers.
Maholm breezed through nine innings, allowing no walks while striking out four and really never even getting into any trouble. A Bucs Dugout commenter points out that Maholm only threw 25 balls the entire game, out of just 91 pitches total.
The Pirates scored five runs off starter Randy Wells in the fourth. Andrew McCutchen singled and Neil Walker doubled, and Steve Pearce brought them both home with a two-run single. After a walk by Chris Snyder, Ronny Cedeno hit a three-run homer.
The Bucs added two runs on solo homers by Lyle Overbay and Snyder off James Russell in the sixth. Then in the seventh, Jose Tabata walked against Scott Maine, and Andrew McCutchen brought him home two batters later with an opposite-field home run.
Tabata doubled to lead off the ninth, and then Garrett Jones became the last of the Pirates' starting eight to record a hit, doubling to bring Tabata home as the Pirates ran up the score to 10-0.
The Pirates will look for a series sweep on Sunday at 2:20. They have taken four out of five from the Cubs this year.