Pirates starting pitcher Paul Skenes delivers a pitch in the first inning against the Cubs on Friday in Chicago. In his second major league start, Skenes pitched six no-hit inning, striking out 11 and walking one. Charles Rex Arbogast/Associated Press

CHICAGO — Paul Skenes struck out 11 over six no-hit innings in his second major league start, and the Pittsburgh Pirates beat the Chicago Cubs 9-3 on Friday.

Skenes allowed just one baserunner – Michael Busch on a full-count, fifth-inning walk on the eighth pitch of the plate appearance – in an utterly dominant performance. After pitching through some nerves in his big league debut against the Cubs last weekend, he looked quite comfortable on a picturesque day at Wrigley Field.

Skenes (1-0), who turns 22 on May 29, struck out his first seven batters, including the side in the first on pitches of at least 100 mph. He struck out Mike Tauchman on a 100 mph fastball on his 100th and final pitch — his 12th to reach triple digits.

The No. 1 overall pick in the 2023 amateur draft became the third rookie with seven strikeouts to start a game, joining Jacob deGrom on Sept. 15, 2014, and Jim Deshaies on Sept. 23, 1986. He also became the first rookie with an outing of at least six no-hit innings and 10-plus strikeouts since Chris Heston threw a no-hitter for San Francisco against the New York Mets on June 9, 2015.

Andrew McCutchen and Jared Triolo homered for Pittsburgh, which held on for a 5-4 victory in the opener of the four-game series on Thursday night. Triolo and Yasmani Grandal each had two hits and three RBI.



MLB: Former outfielder Nelson Cruz was hired by Major League Baseball as a special adviser for baseball operations.

The seven-time All-Star, who turns 44 on July 1, will focus mainly on Latin American topics that include the Dominican Republic and increasing player relations.

Cruz hit .274 with 464 homers, 1,325 RBI and an .856 OPS over 19 seasons with Milwaukee (2005), Texas (2006-13), Baltimore (2014), Seattle (2015-18), Tampa Bay (2021), Washington (2022) and San Diego (2023).

GIANTS: San Francisco Giants outfielder Jung Hoo Lee will miss the rest of the season after dislocating his left shoulder while crashing into an outfield wall.

The Giants announced that Lee will have season-ending surgery in the next couple of weeks.

Lee leaped in an attempt to catch a drive from Cincinnati’s Jeimer Candelario on Sunday when he hit the right-center field wall. Lee went on the injured list the following day, had an MRI that revealed the severity of the injury and went to Dr. Neal ElAttrache on Thursday in Los Angeles for a second opinion.


Lee signed a $113 million, six-year contract after he starred in South Korea. The 25-year-old hit 262 with two homers, eight RBI and .641 OPS in 37 games.

GUARDIANS: Leadoff hitter and left fielder Steven Kwan took batting practice for the first time since hurting his left hamstring and going on the injured list.

Kwan was leading the AL in hitting when he was pulled from a May 4 game with tightness in his hamstring. He got hurt while chasing after a fly ball down the left-field line.

The two-time Gold Glove winner was placed on the 15-day IL on May 6, and the team said at the time it would be at least four weeks before he returned to the lineup.

CUBS: Second baseman Nico Hoerner missed his fourth consecutive game, increasing the possibility he needs a stint on the IL.

Hoerner was scratched for Tuesday’s 7-0 loss at Atlanta because of left hamstring tightness. He went through a more normal pregame routine on Thursday, but Manager Craig Counsell said his hamstring was still bothering him.


“We’ll see how we’re doing kind of daily,” Counsell said before Friday’s 9-3 loss to Pittsburgh. “We’re day to day with it, but still something there.”

Hoerner, a Gold Glove winner last year, is batting .269 with two homers and 12 RBI in 41 games this season.

“We’d like to avoid it,” Counsell said when asked about placing Hoerner on the IL. “But obviously if it’s still lingering, then it’s on the table.”

The Cubs also have been playing without All-Star shortstop Dansby Swanson, who is on the 10-day IL with a right knee sprain. Swanson took batting practice on Friday against Drew Smyly and Jordan Wicks.

Smyly is working his way back from a right hip impingement, and Wicks is on the IL with a left forearm strain.

Seiya Suzuki rested during the loss to the Pirates, but Counsell said it was a planned day off for the outfielder.

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