Cubs vs. Reds Preview, Monday 8/12, 7:05 CT: More Fun With Numbers

Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

The Cubs can't seem to defeat teams in their own division. Why is this?

The Cubs enter Monday's action against the Reds with a record of 18-32 against teams in the N.L. Central, and a record of 34-33 against all other teams. They have played 15 series so far within the division, and won four of them (two against the Pirates, one over the Brewers, and the series just completed against the Cardinals).

They are 3-10 against the Reds; right there, that accounts for more than half the 13 games the Cubs are under the .500 mark. The Cubs actually have a better road record than the Reds do -- 29-32, to the Reds' 28-32. But the Cubs have the worst home record in the National League (23-33) -- worse than the woeful Marlins, who are 26-32 at home. Only the Astros (19-42) are worse at home than the Cubs. The Astros (15-34) and Angels (18-33) are the only teams that have worse records inside their own division than the Cubs.

What does this all mean? I'm not sure, except the Cubs are going to have to find a way to win their in-division games if they ever want to contend. Contention isn't going to happen this year, obviously, but it'd still be nice to defeat the Reds.

And here's another scary thought:

Yes, three shutouts in two days; shut out in both games of a doubleheader August 20, then in a single game August 21.

Cubs lineup:

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

Reds lineup:

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

Today's Starting Pitchers

Travis Wood

Travis Wood


Cubs

vs. Mat Latos

Mat Latos


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 7-8 26 22 0 0 0 0 138.2 108 50 47 10 49 97 3.05 1.13


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2013 - Mat Latos 11-3 23 23 0 0 0 0 146.0 139 60 52 11 46 145 3.21 1.27

Travis Wood bounced back from his worst start of the year with a better outing his last time out, against the Phillies. He has faced the Reds three times this year, and allowed nine earned runs in 19 total innings (4.26 ERA), and the Cubs have lost all of those games. A particular nemesis is Todd Frazier (6-for-12, two home runs).

Mat Latos has faced the Cubs three times this year as well. The Reds have won two of those games. There's hope! (I keep telling myself that, anyway.) Overall, Latos has allowed seven earned runs in 18 total innings vs. the Cubs this year (3.50 ERA) with one home run (David DeJesus). Maybe we're not completely doomed tonight.

Today's game is on CSN Chicago Plus (check your cable/satellite system for the channel).

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.

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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