1 of 3 | Chicago Cubs shortstop Javier Baez had just one hit against the Pittsburgh Pirates Sunday in Chicago, but it was a game-winning RBI single. File Photo by Kamil Krzaczynski/UPI | License Photo
Aug. 3 (UPI) -- Javier Baez smacked a single through the middle of the diamond to plate David Bote and lead the Chicago Cubs to a walk-off, extra-innings triumph over the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Baez belted the RBI single in the bottom of the 11th inning for the 2-1 win Sunday at Wrigley Field in Chicago. The Cubs now are tied with the Atlanta Braves, Los Angeles Dodgers, New York Yankees and Minnesota Twins with an MLB-best seven wins this season.
The Pirates took a 1-0 lead Sunday with a Kevin Newman solo homer in the top of the first inning. Kyle Schwarber then tied the game with an RBI double in the fifth frame before both bullpens kept the bats silent down the stretch and forced extra innings.
The Pirates had two runners on base in the top of the 10th inning, but couldn't capitalize with a go-ahead score. Chicago was in the same situation -- and had the same result -- in the bottom of the inning.
Cubs relief pitcher Jeremy Jeffress got the Pirates out in order in the top of the 11th inning to set up the Cubs bats in the bottom of the frame.
Bote began the half-inning on second base due to MLB's new rule, which allows each team to start with a runner on the base in extra innings this season. Anthony Rizzo hit a fly ball to right field to move Bote to third base in the first at-bat of the half-inning. Baez then stepped in to face Pirates reliever Cody Ponce.
Baez earned a 2-0 lead in the count before he knocked Ponce's third pitch over the pitcher's mound and through the infield. Bote came around to score before Cubs players swarmed Baez -- but maintained adequate social distance -- to celebrate the win.
Baez went 1 for 5 with an RBI and a strikeout. Newman went 2 for 4 with an RBI and run scored for the Pirates. The Cubs had just four hits in the win.
Cubs starter Jon Lester allowed four hits and one run in six innings, but did not earn a decision. Pirates starter Steven Brault did not allow a hit or a run in three innings of work.
The Cubs (7-2) host the Kansas City Royals at 8:15 p.m. EDT Monday at Wrigley Field. The Pirates (2-7) face the Twins at 8:10 p.m. EDT Monday at Target Field in Minneapolis.