Chicago Cubs vs. Cincinnati Reds Preview, Saturday 8/11, 3:05 CT

Brett Jackson of the Chicago Cubs and Starlin Castro of the Chicago Cubs collide going for a ball against the Cincinnati Reds at Wrigley Field in Chicago, Illinois. The Reds won 10-8. (Photo by David Banks/Getty Images)

The photo at the top of this post pretty much sums up Friday's game. What a mess. Please play better today, Cubs. We can take losing, as long as there aren't the mental (and physical) errors that you (and that's a collective "you") made Friday.

Oh, and a little bit faster, too, please. Four hours is waaaaaay too long for a nine-inning game.

Buried in this Paul Sullivan article in the Tribune is this note:

Reliever Lendy Castillo will be activated this weekend. He has been on the disabled list since May 16 with a groin injury.

That's fine, really. As you probably remember, I wasn't really in favor of Lendy being on the team early in the season. But he's pitched really well in seven minor-league appearances (all starts): 20 innings, 0.90 ERA, six walks, 22 strikeouts. With the team being given over to rookies now, let's see what he can do. I assume Scott Maine is probably going to be the one sent out -- Maine doesn't appear to have much future with this team. If Lendy can harness his command, he can be a useful pitcher in the future.

Site note: I have been invited to a wedding this evening, thus will be unable to complete a recap of today's game until early Sunday morning. Look for it then.

Cubs lineup:

DeJesus CF, Barney 2B, Rizzo 1B, Soriano LF, Castro SS, Valbuena 3B, LaHair RF, Clevenger C, Wood P

Reds lineup:

Cozart SS, Stubbs CF, Phillips 2B, Ludwick LF, Frazier 1B, Heisey RF, Valdez 3B, Hanigan C, Arroyo P
Today's Starting Pitchers
Travis Wood
Travis Wood
vs. Bronson Arroyo
Bronson Arroyo
4-8 W-L 7-7
4.77 ERA 4.05
63 SO 91
36 BB 23
18 HR 20
vs. Cin -- vs. Cubs

2012 - Travis Wood 4-8 15 15 0 0 0 0 88.2 78 49 47 18 36 63 4.77 1.29

2012 - Bronson Arroyo 7-7 22 22 1 1 0 0 135.2 148 63 61 20 23 91 4.05 1.26

Travis Wood will be making his first-ever start against his former team. The only current Reds he has faced are Ryan Ludwick (2-for-6) and Wilson Valdez (0-for-3). Maybe this will work out after all.

On the other hand, Bronson Arroyo has pitched many games against the Cubs -- 24 of them, and two relief appearances. All told, he's posted a 2.97 ERA and 1.138 WHIP in those games, far better than his overall career marks. The last of those games was May 2 in Cincinnati. It's instructive to look at that boxscore, because just three of the starting eight in that game (David DeJesus, Starlin Castro and Alfonso Soriano) are still regulars. So what will we see today from Arroyo? Who knows, because Soriano accounts for 45 of the 82 total at-bats current Cubs have against Arroyo.

Today's game is on CSN Chicago.

Here is the complete Mediacenter for today. Gameday game preview

SB Nation game preview

Please visit our SB Nation Reds site Red Reporter. The usual caution is advised.

Today's first pitch thread will post at 3:05 p.m. CDT and the overflows at 4:05, 5:05 and 5:50 p.m. CDT. If you need more overflows due to extra innings or rain delays, post them in the fanshot section. Also please note: due to some under-the-hood changes, the sidebar box with the game thread links is no longer available. It seems you've found them with no problems, but if you haven't been able to find the overflow threads, click the "Chicago Cubs Game Threads" link under "Sections" on the left sidebar. They're all in there.

Discuss amongst yourselves.

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