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Cubs Vs. Pirates Recap: Bucs Take Game 1 With 1-0 Shutout

The Pittsburgh Pirates took the first game of their weekend series at PNC Park against the Cubs on Friday night. The Bucs' pitching staff combined for a shutout of Chicago, sealing a 1-0 win.

A.J. Burnett went 5.1 innings, allowing no runs on just six hits. He struck out six and walked two, but left the game in the 6th after the Cubs put men on first and second with one out. He threw a lot of pitches but it was a solid performance opposite Ryan Dempster. Jared Hughes finished off the fifth inning for Burnett, getting out of the one-out jam. Jason Grilli then came on in relief of Hughes and overpowered the Cubs by striking out the side. Grilli has now struck out the last seven hitters he's faced, spanning three appearances.

The Hammer, Joel Hanrahan came on to finish off the great night for the Pirate pitching staff. Hanrahan did give up two hits in the inning as the Cubs threatened to tie it up. But he battled back to strike out David Dejesus and Starlin Castro to slam the door and record his 12th save.

The only offense of the night came early for Pittsburgh. The Bucs took the 1-0 lead in the top of the 2nd, stringing together a couple hits to plate a run against the impressive Dempster. Pedro Alvarez led off the inning with a single and moved to second on a groundout by recently recalled Matt Hague. Rod Barajas then singled to right to knock in Alvarez for the game's only run.

Kevin Correia will take the mound in Game 2 on Saturday night, looking to win the series for the Bucs against Paul Maholm.

For more on the Pirates, head to Bucs Dugout. Check out Bleed Cubbie Blue for more on the Cubs.

Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.