Sports Digest: Gary RailCats win third in a row

RailCats win third in a row: Alex Gunn allowed one unearned run in six innings of work and catcher Andy Paz went 3 for 3 with a run and an RBI to lead the Gary SouthShore RailCats to a 4-2 win over the visiting Chicago Dogs Monday.

Gunn struck out three, walked two and gave up five hits.

Colin Willis scored twice for the RailCats. Mitch Glasser and Cole Fabio each added an RBI.

Gary (5-5) has won three straight. It plays host to the Dogs at 7:10 p.m. Tuesday.

Montgomery shines in spot start: Mike Montgomery pitched two-hit ball into the sixth inning, Anthony Rizzo went 3 for 4 with a home run and three RBIs, and the sleep-deprived Chicago Cubs beat the slumping Pittsburgh Pirates 7-0 on Monday in Pittsburgh.

Montgomery (1-1), starting for the first time this season in place of injured Yu Darvish, retired the first 13 batters before giving up a sharp single to Corey Dickerson with one out in the fifth. He struck out five and needed just 76 pitches to get through 5 2/3 innings. Montgomery struck out five without allowing a walk.

Rizzo hit his seventh home run in the second off Chad Kuhl (4-3) to give the Cubs an early lead. Addison Russell gave Chicago breathing room in the seventh with the second pinch-hit home run of his career, a shot to the bleachers in left off reliever Steven Brault that stayed just inside the foul pole.

Kuhl gave up just one run in six innings, but fell to 1-5 in his career against the Cubs. Dickerson’s single and Sean Rodriguez’s infield hit leading off the sixth were the only two base runners for Pittsburgh. The Pirates have dropped eight of 10.

The Cubs arrived in Pittsburgh at 4 a.m. local time following a victory over San Francisco in Chicago on Sunday night. Manager Joe Maddon wondered openly before the game why the start time wasn’t pushed until later in the day, but the well-rested Montgomery, who has worked exclusively in the bullpen this season, was more than ready to go.

Pittsburgh managed to get the ball out of the infield five times with Montgomery on the mound, four harmless fly outs and Dickerson’s single, though any threat was erased when David Freese hit into a double play.

Russell’s second home run of the season made it 3-0 and the Cubs loaded the bases with no outs in the eighth, leading to a sequence that got Pirates manager Clint Hurdle ejected. Chicago’s Chris Gimenez hit a grounder to shortstop. Sean Rodriguez threw home for one out, but catcher Elias Diaz threw wildly to first attempting to turn two. The ball rolled into right field, with Javy Baez and Kyle Schwarber racing home to give the Cubs a five-run lead.

The Pirates challenged the call after replay showed Rizzo sliding into Diaz’s legs as Diaz attempted to make the throw. It stood upon review, and when Hurdle came out to argue, he was promptly tossed by home plate umpire Bill Welke.

Poor defense proves costly for White Sox: Edwin Encarnacion homered and had four RBIs, and the Cleveland Indians took advantage of Chicago’s leaky defense to score five times in the fifth inning, beating the White Sox 9-6 on Monday in Cleveland.

Encarnacion tied the game in the fifth with a three-run bloop double. Yonder Alonso’s double drove in the go-ahead run later in the inning and Encarnacion hit a leadoff homer in the seventh.

Cleveland trailed 5-2 going into the fifth, but errors by catcher Alfredo Gonzalez, shortstop Tim Anderson and second baseman Yoan Moncada made three of the runs unearned.

Adam Plutko (3-0) allowed five runs in five innings and has won all three of his starts this season. Tyler Olson, Evan Marshall and Neil Ramirez combined to pitch three shutout innings. Ben Taylor allowed a run in the ninth.

Chris Volstad (0-3) gave up Encarnacion’s double, the only batter he faced.

Chicago’s poor pitching and defense spoiled a memorable major league debut for Matt Skole, who homered and singled.

Cleveland rallied three times late in Sunday’s game to beat Houston 10-9 in 14 innings.

The Indians received a boost from Chicago’s defense in Monday’s comeback.

The White Sox committed two errors with Yan Gomes batting in the fifth. Gonzalez dropped a foul popup in front of the White Sox’s dugout. Anderson fielded Gomes’ grounder at shortstop, but his throw to first was in the dirt for another error.

The Indians loaded the bases on a force play, a single and a walk, ending starter Dylan Covey’s day. Luis Avilan retired Jose Ramirez on a popup.

Volstad entered the game but right fielder Daniel Palka, shaded toward right-center, couldn’t make a sliding catch of Encarnacion’s fly ball that landed near the foul line.

Jace Fry faced Alonso, who doubled to center for a 6-5 lead. Moncada booted Melky Cabrera’s ground ball to score another run.

Skole, called up from Triple-A Charlotte before the game, started a two-run rally in the second with a single. The left-handed hitting first baseman homered in the fourth, a 418-foot shot into the right-field seats.

Skole, 28, signed as a minor league free agent with the White Sox in January after spending seven seasons in the Washington Nationals organization. He was called up when Matt Davidson went on the 10-day DL with back spasms.

Anderson followed Skole with a homer in the fourth.

Michael Brantley extended his hitting streak to 17 games with a first-inning single and Francisco Lindor had three hits.

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