By JAY COHEN
AP Sports Writer
CHICAGO (AP) - Mike Montgomery pitched six-hit ball into the eighth inning and helped himself at the plate, leading the Chicago Cubs to a 6-1 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Monday night.
Montgomery (5-6) struck out four and walked none in his second start since he was inserted into the rotation after Jon Lester was placed on the 10-day disabled list. The left-hander was pulled after Jordy Mercer snapped his 17 1/3-inning scoreless streak with a leadoff homer in the eighth.
Carl Edwards Jr. got three outs before Wade Davis finished the six-hitter as Chicago moved 2 1/2 games ahead of idle Milwaukee for the top spot in the NL Central.
Trevor Williams (5-7) hung in there with Montgomery, pitching five innings of two-run ball, but Pittsburgh lost for the 11th time in its last 16 games. Mercer went 3 for 3, David Freese had two hits and Andrew McCutchen singled for the Pirates.