Cubs vs. Reds Preview, Monday 4/22, 6:10 CT: Errors Were Made

USA TODAY Sports

The Cubs face the Reds in a three-game series that begins Monday evening.

Believe it or not, the Cubs don't lead the major leagues in errors -- it just seems that way. They have one fewer than the Washington Nationals. The Nats also have a much better offense than the Cubs do -- 72 runs scored to 57. That's the difference, really, between Washington's 10-8 record and the Cubs' 5-12. The Cubs have played many close games, including all three over the weekend against the Brewers, but the eight unearned runs given up to Milwaukee were the difference in the series.

The Cubs have already allowed 14 unearned runs -- that's a lot. Only one other team has allowed that many -- the Astros. (The Nats have given up 12.) So you see, the Cubs can compete -- if they'd start playing better defense. Maybe that'll start this evening. (Hint: it really needs to. Threats of benching or demotion mean little, in my view. Big league players have to start playing like big league players; it's that simple.)

Cubs lineup:

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

Reds lineup:

Choo CF, Cozart SS, Votto 1B, Phillips 2B, Bruce RF, Frazier 3B, Heisey LF, Mesoraco C, Leake P

Today's Starting Pitchers

Travis Wood

Travis Wood


Cubs

vs. Mike Leake

Mike Leake


Reds

vs. Cin

--

vs. Cubs


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2013 - Travis Wood 1-1 3 3 0 0 0 0 19.2 13 5 4 0 8 13 1.83 1.07


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2013 - Mike Leake 1-0 3 3 0 0 0 0 19.0 19 9 9 2 6 13 4.26 1.32

Travis Wood has two career starts against his former team, posting a 5.25 ERA, though issuing just one walk and striking out 11 in 12 total innings. Wood has been very good so far this year; perhaps he's turned a career corner. Current Reds are a small-sample-size 13-for-43 (.302) against him with three home runs (Jay Bruce, Todd Frazier and Ryan Ludwick).

Mike Leake, who was the Reds' No. 1 pick in 2009 (the year the Cubs took Brett Jackson), has turned out to be just an okay MLB starter (4.23 career ERA). He's done a bit better lifetime vs. the Cubs: 3.56 ERA, 1.215 WHIP in 10 starts covering 68⅓ innings. Overall, current Cubs are hitting .327 against him (34-for-104); Starlin Castro does particularly well (.393, 11-for-28, three doubles, a triple, five RBI). Maybe that's a good sign.

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 Reds site Red Reporter. The usual caution is advised.

Here's the scoop on game threads for 2013. You'll find the game preview -- like this one -- posting as the first link in the StoryStream™, which will then contain all the overflow threads and the recap. The recap will also be on the front page as a separate post; once I post a game recap, the stream for each game will be retitled "Cubs vs. (Team) (Day of Week) Game Threads" so you can go back and find every thread related to that particular game.

In general, game previews will post two hours before game time. Exception: for day games after night games, that will usually be 90 minutes.

You will also be able to find the First Pitch Thread and all the overflow threads in the box marked "Chicago Cubs Game Threads" at the bottom of the front page (you can also find them in this section link). They will also appear in this StoryStream™. As I've done for each regular-season game for several years now, we'll have the First Pitch thread at five minutes before game time (moved up from actual game time per your requests), then an overflow one hour, two hours and 2:45 after game time.

Discuss amongst yourselves.

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