Pittsburgh, PA (SportsNetwork.com) - Anthony Rizzo went 3-for-4 with a two-run homer and three RBI as the Chicago Cubs beat the Pittsburgh Pirates, 7-3, in the second installment of a four-game series at PNC Park.
Rizzo also collected two doubles and scored three runs, while Luis Valbuena drove in a pair of runs for the Cubs, who snapped a two-game losing skid.
"I just feel very confident," Rizzo said. "If you're feeling confident at the plate, it makes a huge difference. I do feel good and I'm just gonna ride it out."
Chicago starter Travis Wood (6-5), who came in with a league-worst 8.04 ERA on the road, tossed a solid 6 2/3 innings, allowing three runs on nine hits and two walks.
Pirates top prospect Gregory Polanco made his long-awaited major league debut, going 1-for-5 with a single and a run scored. Andrew McCutchen smashed a two-run home run for the Pirates, who have dropped three of their last four.
"I was very excited," Polanco said of his first big league game. "I know we lost but it was my first game and I was so excited to play."
Casey Sadler (0-1) was tagged for four runs on four hits in just 2 2/3 innings of relief to absorb the loss.
Junior Lake reached on a base hit before Rizzo crushed a two-run shot to deep right field in the first to give the Cubs an early lead.
After Polanco lined a two-out, opposite-field single in the third, McCutchen tied the game on a two-run homer into the Cubs bullpen.
Pirates starter Francisco Liriano showed some discomfort in his left side during warm-up pitches before the fourth inning and left the game.
Jeanmar Gomez took over and was welcomed by a Rizzo double. A hit batter put runners on the corners and Darwin Barney's two-out double plated Rizzo and made it 3-2 Chicago.
The Pirates answered with a bases loaded sac fly to center from Josh Harrison that scored Jordy Mercer to tie the game in the home half.
Pinch-hitter Valbuena delivered a two-run double off the center-field wall that made it 5-3 Cubs in the sixth. Starlin Castro walked and Justin Ruggiano was hit by a pitch after a groundout to start the inning.
Lake reached on a two-out bunt in the seventh and Rizzo drove him in with a double to right that Polanco had trouble catching in right field. Castro made it 7-3 with a line-drive single.