Polanco turns Cahill's 'single' into out from RF

Pirates outfielder secures 10th assist of season under rare circumstances

Polanco turns Cahill's 'single' into out from RF

PITTSBURGH -- Gregory Polanco's 10th assist of the season was the rarest -- but also the easiest.

The Buccos right fielder was stationed shallow and toward the right-field line as Cubs pitcher Trevor Cahill stepped in to face Gerrit Cole leading off the top of the fifth inning in the opener of Tuesday's doubleheader at PNC Park, a 5-4 Pirates win.

Cahill got off a sharp liner, which Polanco fielded on one hop and fired to first baseman Pedro Alvarez in plenty of time for the ol' 9-3 putout. According to Statcast™, Polanco's throw was 87.3 mph and traveled 106 feet.

The assist was also the season's 32nd for Pittsburgh outfielders, tops in the National League.

Coghlan tries for 9-3 putout

A half-inning later, Pirates third baseman Jung Ho Kang led off by lining a sharp single to right. Upon fielding the knock, right fielder Chris Coghlan sensed an opportunity to return the favor to the Bucs and quickly threw to first, but Kang was too quick.

Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog Change for a Nickel. He can also be found on Twitter @Tom_Singer and on his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.