Chicago Cubs vs. Washington Nationals Preview, Tuesday 8/9, 7:05 CT: Let's Try This Again

As rain falls seagulls sit on the tarp before the start of the game between the Washington Nationals and the Chicago Cubs on August 8, 2011 at Wrigley Field in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by David Banks/Getty Images)

See the photo at the top of this post?

That's not what Wrigley Field is going to look like today, or this evening. The sun is shining in Chicago, the temperature reached the low 80s during the afternoon, and it's supposed to be a gorgeous night for baseball.

I mention this because that's been fairly rare at Wrigley Field this year. When it hasn't been pouring rain, it's generally either been freezing cold or sticky humid or 100 degrees. The Cubs have played 59 home games on 57 dates (two split doubleheaders). Looking back through my scorecards, on which I post weather conditions, it would appear that the number of days or nights on which it wasn't any of the above is less than 20, maybe less than 15.

However, for the next three days -- the remainder of this homestand -- the weather is supposed to be spectacular. Better late than never, I suppose. Let's hope the Cubs' play matches that.

Cubs lineup:

Castro SS, Barney 2B, Ramirez 3B, Peña 1B, Byrd CF, Soriano LF, Colvin RF, Soto C, Garza P

Nationals lineup:

Ankiel CF, Espinosa 2B, Zimmerman 3B, Morse 1B, Werth RF, Gomes LF, Desmond SS, Ramos C, Wang P

Since both teams have decided to use the scheduled Monday starters today, you get to read yesterday's pitcher previews again! (Saved me time, too.)

Today's Starting Pitchers
Matt Garza
Matt Garza
vs. Chien-Ming Wang
Chien-Ming Wang
5-8 W-L 0-2
3.78 ERA 6.00
129 SO 2
46 BB 2
9 HR 1
vs. Wash -- vs. Cubs

2011 - Matt Garza 5-8 21 21 1 0 0 0 128.2 121 63 54 9 46 129 3.78 1.30

2011 - Chien-Ming Wang 0-2 2 2 0 0 0 0 9.0 15 12 6 1 2 2 6.00 1.89

Matt Garza started against the Nationals on July 7 in Washington. The Cubs wound up winning the game, but not because of the way Garza pitched. Matt was outstanding in his last start, last Wednesday in Pittsburgh, and he has a 2.70 ERA and 1.13 WHIP in 11 starts at Wrigley Field. Current Nationals are hitting .370 (13-for-35) against him, but most of that was from that awful outing in DC in July.

You might think, that since Chien-Ming Wang spent his entire career with the Yankees, and missed quite a bit of time before this year, that he had never faced the Cubs. But you would be wrong -- he threw eight solid innings against them for New York on June 18, 2005. (Boxscore for amusement value only.) Among current Cubs, the one who's faced him most is, as you might expect, Carlos Pena: 6-for-16 (.375), three doubles, one HR. Wang has not pitched well in his two starts since returning to the major leagues (15 hits, only 2 K in nine innings, 6.00 ERA).

Today's game is on CSN Chicago and MASN. Here is the complete Mediacenter for today. Gameday game preview

SB Nation game preview

Please visit our SB Nation Nationals site Federal Baseball.

Today's first pitch thread will be up at 7:05 p.m. CDT and the overflow threads will post at 8 pm, 9 pm and 9:45 pm CDT. If you need more overflows due to extra innings or rain delays, post them in the fanshot section.

Discuss amongst yourselves.

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