CHICAGO (AP) — Alfonso Rivas had three hits and five RBIs, and the Chicago Cubs snapped a four-game winning streak with a 21-0 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Saturday.
Rivas, who was recalled Friday from Triple-A Iowa, capped the second of Chicago’s eight runs with a three-run homer. He added RBI singles in the fourth and fifth.
Rivas is 5-for-11 in his two seasons with the Cubs this year.
“He’s pretty up on what’s going on,” manager David Ross said.
The Cubs finished with 23 hits in their widest shutout victory since at least 1901. Their 21 runs were the most since scoring 26 at Colorado on Aug. 18, 1995, and their 21-run margin was the largest since They beat the Boston Braves. 24-2 on July 3, 1945.
Nico Hoerner collected a career-high four hits, and Seiya Suzuki, Willson Contreras and Ian Happ each had three hits.
Every player who hit for the Cubs (7-8) collected at least one hit and scored at least one run.
It was more than enough support for Kyle Hendricks (1-1), who pitched two-hit ball in seven innings. Sean Newcomb pitched the eighth inning in his Cubs debut and Scott Effross finished with three hits.
“It was easy to throw to contact,” Hendricks said.
The Pirates (7-8) have lost four of their last six games. It was the biggest loss in Pirates history, and the 21 runs tied the most they have allowed since May 25, 1954, against the New York Giants.
Zach Thompson (0-2) gave up nine runs, four earned, and nine hits in two innings.
Thompson allowed four straight hits with one out in the second before shortstop Kevin Newman made errors on back-to-back plays. Newman has been charged with four errors in 12 games after committing three in 132 games in 2021.
“I’ll try to flush it,” Newman said.
The Pirates’ bullpen, which held the Cubs scoreless for 10 1/3 innings in the first two games of the four-game series, allowed 12 earned runs in the final six innings. Infielder/outfielder Diego Castillo pitched the eighth inning and allowed four runs.
Eighteen of the Cubs’ hits were singles. Suzuki, Contreras and Happ hit back-to-back doubles to start a fifth of five races.
“I like 21 any way we can get it,” Ross said.
The Pirates and Cubs are the only major league teams to have a 20-run shutout against each other, according to STATS. The Pirates beat the Cubs 22-0 on September 16, 1975.
Pirates: 2B Josh VanMeter was ruled out due to illness.
Cubs: OF Clint Frazier (appendicitis) had successful surgery. “I got a pretty funny text saying he’s ready to rake,” Ross said. “It seems to be fine.”
UNTIL NEXT TIME
Pirates RHP JT Brubaker (0-1, 9.82 ERA) pitches in the series finale on Sunday. Brubaker allowed four runs in five innings Tuesday in a 5-2 loss to the Brewers.
Cubs LHP Justin Steele (1-1, 4.30 ERA) takes the mound. Steele was tagged for four runs in 2 2/3 innings Tuesday in a 6-5 loss to the Rays.
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