Chicago Cubs vs. Milwaukee Brewers Preview, Thursday 8/30, 1:20 CT

A video board pays tribute to Darwin Barney of the Chicago Cubs, who broke the National League record for consecutive errorless games at second base, following a loss to the Milwaukee Brewers at Wrigley Field in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

News item:

Since the Brewers moved to the National League in 1998, the current series is the ninth four-game set between the two teams (including a three-game series in 2002 that became a four-game series due to a previous rainout).

In the eight previous four-game series, the Cubs have won four of them, the Brewers three, and one of them split.

The only year when either one of the teams was as bad as the Cubs are now was 2002, when the Brewers finished 56-106, and the Cubs were nearly as bad that year at 67-95. The Cubs won that series three games to one.

Brooks Raley is facing Shaun Marcum today. Unlike the series 10 years ago this week, this one will likely not end well.

Cubs lineup:

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

Alfonso Soriano gets the day off. But why would you put David DeJesus -- the better outfielder -- in left field, and Bryan LaHair in right?

Brewers lineup was not in at the time I wrote this post. Check the BCB Twitter feed for the Milwaukee lineup.

Today's Starting Pitchers
Brooks Raley
Brooks Raley
Cubs
vs. Shaun Marcum
Shaun Marcum
Brewers
1-2 W-L 5-9
6.64 ERA 3.19
14 SO 82
9 BB 27
5 HR 10
vs. Mil -- vs. Cubs

W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2012 - Brooks Raley 1-2 4 4 0 0 0 0 20.1 23 16 15 5 9 14 6.64 1.57


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2012 - Shaun Marcum 5-4 15 14 0 0 0 0 87.1 75 37 31 10 27 82 3.19 1.17

Brooks Raley has never faced the Brewers or anyone on their current roster. Maybe this is good. Maybe it isn't. We'll find out this afternoon.

Shaun Marcum has made two starts against the Cubs this year, allowing a total of four earned runs in 14 innings. That's good. He also spent two months on the DL with elbow issues. That isn't good. (For him, anyway.) He threw five innings in the one start he's made since his return; the Pirates scored four runs off him, but they were all unearned. Current Cubs are 11-for-68 against him (.162), but three of those hits are home runs (Darwin Barney, Starlin Castro, Bryan LaHair). Doomed? Maybe, or maybe not.

Today's game is on CSN Chicago.

Here is the complete MLB.com Mediacenter for today.

MLB.com Gameday

Baseball-reference.com game preview

SB Nation game preview

Please visit our SB Nation Brewers site Brew Crew Ball. The usual caution is advised.

Today's first pitch thread will post at 1:20 p.m. CDT and the overflows at 2:20, 3:20 and 4:05 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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