Nothing about Brian Burres' career says "stopper," but with the Pirates in the throes of a five-game losing streak, that's exactly what he was Friday afternoon at Wrigley Field, coming through with a solid spot start to key a 3-1 Pittsburgh win.
Burres pitched 5.1 innings, allowing five hits, a walk and an earned run while striking out five. Carlos Pena got to him for a home run in the second inning, but that would be all he'd yield on the afternoon before turning the game over to the bullpen, which pitched the remaining 3.1 innings without giving up a hit or a walk. Joel Hanrahan finished the game off with his 33rd save.
Offensively, the Bucs got a lot of production from the top of their lineup. Alex Presley collected three hits and Josh Harrison was 2-4 with an RBI. Garrett Jones and Jose Tabata also knocked in a run each, providing the team with all the scoring it would need to hold on for victory.
The win may be a costly one, though. Andrew McCutchen had to leave the game after being hit by a pitch on his left hand in the first inning, and is listed as day-to-day with a bone contusion. Doctors say the hand isn't broken, which is good news for the All-Star centerfielder, but he could miss some time over the next week, which certainly isn't good news at all for the offensively challenged Pirates.
The win was No. 63 on the season for the Bucs ensures they will not lose 100 games this season after the 105-loss campaign a year ago.
Next up for the Bucs is a 1:05 tilt with the Cubs on Saturday. The probables are Ross Ohlendorf for the Pirates and Casey Coleman for the Cubs.