Chicago Cubs vs. San Francisco Giants Preview, Sunday 9/2, 1:20 CT

Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Cubs shortstop Starlin Castro fields a ground ball off the bat of San Francisco Giants left fielder Xavier Nady at Wrigley Field. Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-US PRESSWIRE

40 years ago today, I was about to begin my junior year of high school. (Yes, go ahead, do the math. I'll wait.) My family had some relatives visiting from England. We were going to take them to the Cubs game, to show them what baseball was all about.

It rained all morning on Saturday, September 2, 1972. I lived in the north suburbs at the time and, back then, the Cubs were much more likely to call a game for bad weather than they are now. We didn't figure they'd play, so didn't want to make the drive down for nothing.

And that is how I missed being at Milt Pappas' no-hitter that should have been a perfect game. (Yes, Bruce Froemming, it should have been. Seriously, even if there isn't a perfect game at stake, what umpire wouldn't give a pitcher a borderline call when it's the possible last out of an 8-0 game?) Only 11,144 attended the game, which otherwise was virtually meaningless; the Cubs were 11 games out of first place, playing the awful Padres.

It would take 36 more years before another Cub would throw a no-hitter. Six no-hitters were thrown at Wrigley Field between 1955 and 1972 (Sam Jones, 1955; Don Cardwell, 1960; Jim Maloney, 1965; Ken Holtzman, 1969; Burt Hooton, 1972, and Pappas) -- they seemed almost commonplace. Not one has been thrown there in the 40 years since Pappas did it.

Cubs lineup:

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

Giants lineup was not in at the time I wrote this post; check the BCB Twitter feed for the Giants lineup.

Today's Starting Pitchers
Travis Wood
Travis Wood
vs. Matt Cain
Matt Cain
4-11 W-L 13-5
4.71 ERA 2.82
84 SO 164
38 BB 36
23 HR 19
vs. SF -- vs. Cubs

2012 - Travis Wood 4-11 21 19 0 0 0 0 114.2 103 63 60 23 38 84 4.71 1.23

2012 - Matt Cain 13-5 29 26 2 2 0 0 182.0 149 62 57 19 36 164 2.82 1.02

Travis Wood threw seven very good innings against the Giants June 3 in San Francisco. It didn't matter. The Cubs got shut out. Wood gave up only three hits. It didn't matter. The Cubs got shut out. Are you expecting something different today?

Matt Cain is really good. He threw eight strong innings against the Cubs June 2 in San Francisco. He gave up only five hits. Two starts after that, he threw a perfect game. Since the perfect game, he's been a bit more hittable -- 3.52 ERA -- but do you really think that will matter today? Clearest case of doom I've ever seen.

Today's game is on WGN.

Here is the complete Mediacenter for today. Gameday game preview

SB Nation game preview

Please visit our SB Nation Giants site McCovey Chronicles.

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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