HOUSTON,TX - SEPTEMBER 12: Dave Sappelt #17 of the Chicago Cubs high fives Tony Campana #1 and David DeJesus #9 after the final out against the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park on September 12, 2012 in Houston, Texas. Chicago won 5-1. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)

Cubs Vs. Pirates: Chicago Offense Explodes For 13 Runs In Game 3 Win

The Chicago Cubs have won two of three games against the Pirates heading into Monday's series finale.

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Cubs Vs. Pirates Final Score: Anthony Rizzo Belts 2 HRs In 13-9 Chicago Victory

Led by a monster offensive performance from first baseman Anthony Rizzo, the Chicago Cubs took down Pittsburgh on Sunday afternoon in a wildly entertaining game, 13-9.

The 23-year-old Rizzo, who sat out one game earlier in the week after a scary collision tweaked his neck, came up big with his 13th and 14th home runs of the season in the victory. The highlight of his 3-for-5 performance, without question, came in the sixth inning, as the youngster smashed a 3-1 fastball from Pittsburgh reliever Jared Hughes into the bleachers for his first career grand slam.

Also getting in on the action was outfielder Alfonso Soriano with a 3-for-5 day from the plate. Soriano opened the scoring in the first inning with an RBI single to score Rizzo, and then padded the lead in the eighth with an RBI double that plated infielder Darwin Barney.

With an eye on taking three of four, the Cubs will send Travis Wood (6-11, 4.23 ERA) to the hill on Monday to wrap up the series against Pittsburgh right-hander Kevin Correia (10-9, 4.29 ERA).

Be sure to visit Bleed Cubbie Blue for more Cubs news, and check out Bucs Dugout for more on the Pirates. Also head over to Baseball Nation for even more news and analysis from around the league.


Pirates Vs. Cubs: Jason Berken Gets First Start For Cubs

The Chicago Cubs have won six of their last seven games, and they'll try to make it seven of eight Saturday against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

The Cubs will start right-handed pitcher Jason Berken in his first appearance since joining the Cubs and his first major-league start since his rookie season in 2009. Berken was claimed off waivers on Sept. 7 after the Baltimore Orioles designated him for assignment.

Berken's only appearance in the majors this season came on May 7 for the Orioles. He pitched one inning in relief and gave up six hits and seven runs, only two of which were earned. Berken is starting in place of Jeff Samardzija, who was shut down after his last start upon reaching his innings limit for the season.

Here are the lineups:

For the Cubs:

CF Joe Mather (R)

2B Darwin Barney (R)

1B Anthony Rizzo (L)

LF Alfonso Soriano (R)

SS Starlin Castro (R)

C Wellington Castillo (R)

3B Josh Vitters (R)

RF Dave Sappelt (R)

P Jason Berken (R)

For the Pirates:

LF Starling Marte (R)

RF Travis Snider (L)

CF Andrew McCutchen (R)

1B Garrett Jones (L)

2B Neil Walker (S)

3B Pedro Alvarez (L)

SS Clint Barmes (R)

C Rod Barajas (R)

P Wandy Rodriguez (S)

The game will start at 12:05 p.m. CT and will be broadcast on CSN.

For more on the Cubs, be sure to visit Bleed Cubbie Blue. For more on the Pirates, check out Bucs Dugout.

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