Chicago third baseman Kris Bryant had three hits and scored a run in his first career start in the leadoff spot and Ben Zobrist had two RBIs as the Cubs continued their roll with a 3-1 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates at Wrigley Field on Friday.
Jason Heyward and Willson Contreras each had two hits and left-hander Mike Montgomery (2-1) gave up one run in six innings as the Cubs (36-24) won for the 10th time in 12 games to reach 12 games above .500 for the first time this season.
Josh Harrison, Austin Meadows and Colin Moran each had two hits for the Pirates (31-32), who have lost 10 of 13 to fall below .500 for the first time this season. They have lost 15 of 20 since reaching a season-high nine-games over .500 on May 17.
Bryant, who had three singles, extended his hitting streak to seven games and Anthony Rizzo drove in a run with a sacrifice fly. Bryant is 13-for-31 during his streak. Rizzo has 20 RBIs in his last 19 games.
Montgomery (2-1) gave up seven hits and one run in six innings, with one strikeout and one walk. He has given up two earned runs in three starts covering 17 2/3 innings since taking injured Yu Darvish’s spot in the starting rotation.
Pedro Strop got the final four outs for his first save of the season, the final out coming when left fielder Ian Happ made a diving catch on a ball down the line with a runner on third base.
Pirates starter Chad Kuhl (4-4) gave up eight hits and three runs in 5 1/3 innings, with six strikeouts and two walks. Kuhl is 0-2 against the Cubs this season and 1-6 with a 6.75 ERA in nine career starts against them.
Harrison and Meadows singled to lead off the game, and Harrison scored on Starling Marte’s sacrifice fly to make it 1-0.
The Cubs countered with two runs in their first for a 2-1 lead. Bryant singled and Heyward doubled to lead off the inning before Zobrist singled and Rizzo hit a sacrifice fly.
Montgomery walked with one out in the second inning before Bryant and Heyward singled to load the bases. Zobrist hit into a force-out at second as Montgomery scored for a 3-1 lead.
—Field Level Media