Olivares and Gonzales hit home runs, propelling the Pittsburgh Pirates to a 5-4 victory against the Chicago Cubs

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Seiya Suzuki hits the ball fo a single

Edward Olivares and Nick Gonzales both hit home runs, helping the Pittsburgh Pirates secure a 5-4 victory against the Chicago Cubs on Thursday night.

Olivares smashed a two-run homer in the first inning. He also doubled and scored in the sixth inning against Justin Steele (0-1), extending the Pirates’ lead to 5-3.

Gonzales contributed with a solo home run in the fourth inning, while pitcher Jared Jones (3-4) delivered a solid performance, striking out seven batters in six innings. Despite giving up a sacrifice fly to Christopher Morel in the eighth inning, the Pirates started the four-game series with a win after losing six of their last eight games.

They had previously lost two of three games against the Cubs in Pittsburgh over the weekend.

Jones allowed three runs and seven hits. The 22-year-old right-hander has maintained a consistent performance, pitching at least five innings and conceding three runs or fewer in each of his nine career starts. Additionally, this was his fifth outing without issuing a walk, relying on his slider to keep the Cubs’ batters off balance.

Jared Jones pitches to the batter

“Just going straight back to the drawing board, reviewing videos, analyzing my previous outings where I performed well,” he said. “Making sure I incorporate those elements into my daily practice routine.”

Aroldis Chapman took over in the seventh inning. Holderman’s pitch hit Seiya Suzuki on the left arm at the start of the eighth, and catcher Yasmani Grandal made an inaccurate throw to first base after grabbing Cody Bellinger’s grounder, putting runners on second and third base.

Morel then reduced the deficit to 5-4 with a sacrifice fly before Ian Happ struck out. Although Michael Busch walked, pitching coach Oscar Marin’s visit seemed to help Holderman regain composure, and he induced Nick Madrigal to ground out to second baseman Alika Williams after the visit.

“The first pitch to Seiya got away from him and then we had the throw inside the line, but he was able to work out of it,” manager Derek Shelton said.

“Oscar had a really good visit with him and kind of calmed him down, and then Alika with an unbelievable play. A short-hand, backhand play, runners at first and second in that environment was really important for us. It was a really nice play.”

David Bednar came in to pitch the ninth inning and secured his ninth save in twelve opportunities.

Kai Soriano

By Kai Soriano

Kai Soriano, hailing from the picturesque archipelago of the Philippines, is not just your average writer. With a flair for capturing the essence of the NFL through words, Kai stands out as a leading NFL Content Writer. Blending his passion for sports with his impeccable writing skills, he delivers content that is both engaging and insightful. Dive into his pieces, and experience the game as if you're right there on the field! 🏈

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