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National League Preview from The Sports Network



Wednesday, June 11 (All times Eastern)

Chicago Cubs (26-36) at Pittsburgh Pirates (30-34), 7:05 p.m.

Probable Starting Pitchers: Chicago - Jason Hammel (6-3, 2.53) Pittsburgh - Brandon Cumpton (1-2, 6.51)

(SportsNetwork.com) - Surprise early-season star Jason Hammel carries a 14- inning scoreless streak into his Wednesday night assignment, which has his Chicago Cubs visiting PNC Park for the third game of a four-game series with the host Pittsburgh Pirates.

The veteran has pitched with four teams in nine big-league seasons and won seven times in 26 appearances with the Cubs last year, but his first 12 starts of 2014 have yielded the second-lowest opposition batting average in the major leagues (.191) along with the second-lowest percentage of walks and hits per inning pitched (0.88).

He's also not given up a home run in eight starts.

In his last start, on Friday against Miami, Hammel threw seven scoreless innings and struck out eight batters in a game the Cubs ultimately won, 5-3, in 13 innings.

He's 4-0 in his last nine starts against the Pirates and has already bested them twice this season, allowing one run in 6 2/3 innings on April 3, then giving up three runs in seven innings on April 9.

Pittsburgh enters a day after its Tuesday starter, Francisco Liriano, left after just four innings against the Cubs due to left-side discomfort.

Starting Wednesday is youngster Brandon Cumpton, who defeated Milwaukee with 5 1/3 innings of three-run ball on Friday. It marked a nice recovery from his previous outing, in which he was raked for 11 runs against the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Foes have hit .211 against him in their first at-bats, but .387 from then on.

He has never faced the Cubs.

On Tuesday, Anthony Rizzo went 3-for-4 with a two-run homer and three RBI as the Cubs beat the Pirates, 7-3.

Rizzo also collected two doubles and scored three runs, while Luis Valbuena drove in a pair of runs for the Cubs. 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. Casey Sadler (0-1) was tagged for four runs on four hits in just 2 2/3 innings of relief to absorb the loss.

The Pirates have won five of eight versus the Cubs this season.

06/11 10:40:20 ET

  • PGA: The Barclays

    Tomorrow at 12:30 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: New Orleans at Indianapolis

    Tomorrow at 8:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: San Diego at San Francisco

    Sunday at 4:00 pm on FOX50

  • HighSchoolOT.com Wrap-up Show

    Tomorrow at 9:00 am on 99.9 The Fan

  • MLB: San Francisco at Washington

    Tomorrow at 4:00 pm on 99.9 The Fan

  • MLB: LA Dodgers at Oakland

    Sunday at 8:00 pm on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
Final
DUR 5
GWI 2
 
Final
NEP 30
CAR 7
 
Final
CHC 4
BAL 1
Final
NYY 4
CWS 3
 
Final
CLE 1
HOU 5
Final
WAS 3
SFG 10
 
Final
PHI 5
STL 4
Final
TOR 0
TAM 8
12th
CIN 1
ATL 3
 
Final
BOS 3
SEA 5
 
Final
TEX 3
KAN 6
 
7th
MIN 15
DET 5
 
Final
MIL 3
PIT 8
 
8th
COL 4
MIA 7
 
8th
ARI 4
SDP 0
 
5th
OAK 1
ANA 2
 
6th
LOS 2
NYM 1
 
Final
NEP 30
CAR 7
 
Final
DET 13
JAC 12
 
Final
NYJ 24
NYG 35
 
Final
GBP 31
OAK 21
 
2nd
SEA 28
CHI 0
 
Final
DUR 5
GWI 2