Cubs vs. Phillies Preview, Saturday 8/31, 3:05 CT: A Bad Month Ends

Brian Kersey

The Cubs have reached the end of another awful August.

Not so much fun with numbers:

Cubs' record this month: 7-20. One more loss would equal the 21 losses they had in August 2012, only with one fewer win.

Record needed for 100 losses: 6-22

Record needed in remaining home games for worst-ever Wrigley record: 6-8 (or worse)

Record needed in remaining games for worst two-year span in franchise history: 13-15 (or worse)

Hope you're enjoying this spectacular(ly bad) era in Cubs history.

Cubs lineup:

Castro SS, Barney 2B, Rizzo 1B, Murphy 3B, Lake CF, Castillo C, McDonald LF, Gillespie RF, Rusin P

Ladies and gentlemen, your Chicago Cubs cleanup hitter against Cliff Lee, Donnie Murphy.

The Phillies lineup was not available at the time I wrote this post. Please check the BCB Twitter feed for the Phillies lineup.

Today's Starting Pitchers

Chris Rusin

Chris Rusin


Cubs

vs. Cliff Lee

Cliff Lee


Phillies

vs. Phi

--

vs. Cubs


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2013 - Chris Rusin 2-3 8 8 0 0 0 0 44.1 41 13 13 3 16 26 2.64 1.29


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2013 - Cliff Lee 11-6 28 25 1 1 0 0 178.2 158 65 61 18 28 164 3.07 1.04

Chris Rusin has pitched his way into consideration for the 2014 rotation; almost all of his starts have been at least decent this year. He has never faced the Phillies nor anyone on their roster and has a 2.48 ERA and 1.44 WHIP in five August starts covering 29 innings. (Those numbers are supposed to encourage you about today's game, so be encouraged!)

Cliff Lee has not faced the Cubs since 2011, and current Cubs are 9-for-63 (.143) against him. Lee is having the worst month of his 2013 season, but "worst" is relative; that's still a 3.18 ERA and 1.18 WHIP in 34 innings in five August starts. We're probably doomed.

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 Phillies site The Good Phight.

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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