Cubs’ starter Rick Reuschel shut the Pirates out on five hits as Chicago won the rubber match of the three-game series at TRS. The final was 5-0.
Bucs’ starter Bruce Kison had a solid game. The Cubs got to him for a run in the first on a bomb by Bill Buckner, but he kept the score at 1-0 through the seventh. From the second through the seventh, the only runners he allowed came on two errors, a walk and a hit. One of the runners was erased on a double play and only one other got past first.
The Cubs broke the game open, though, in the eighth. Kison allowed a hit and a walk, and left with one out. Grant Jackson gave up a single to load the bases and a sacrifice fly to make it 2-0. Enrique Romo then came on to face Jerry Martin and gave up a three-run home run. Kison was charged with three runs for his seven and a third innings, a tough result considering that he allowed only three hits and three walks.
The Pirates meanwhile had little success against Reuschel. Through the first six innings, they had only three baserunners. Willie Stargell led off the bottom of the second with a single, but eventually got thrown out at the plate on a two-out single by Phil Garner. Rennie Stennett singled in the third but got thrown out stealing.
The Pirates got another chance in the seventh when Dave Parker singled with one out, stole second and went to third on a wild throw. Stargell, however, popped up and, after a walk, Reuschel fanned Ed Ott. After that, a single by Garner in the eighth was the only baserunner they had.
The loss left Kison at 3-4. They remain tied with St. Louis for second, five and a half games behind Montreal.
The Pirates next move on to New York for three games against the Mets, starting with their first doubleheader of the season tomorrow. John Candelaria and Jim Rooker will face Craig Swan and Pete Falcone in the twinbill. The other game will feature Bert Blyleven against Tom Hausman. The two teams will then come to Pittsburgh for two more games.