Cubs vs. Brewers Preview, Saturday 9/7, 3:05 CT: A Winning Homestand?

David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

The Cubs could accomplish something today they haven't done in almost two months.

The Cubs are 4-3 so far this homestand; if they win Saturday's game, that will clinch the first winning homestand since they went 5-4 against the Pirates, Angels and Cardinals just before the All-Star break. (That included an interruption for a makeup game at the Cell against the White Sox, which they also won.)

The Cubs are just 7-18 at home since the break, so winning a homestand would be a nice change. A win would also give the Cubs 61 victories on the season, matching their total from 2012.

Baby steps, right?

Cubs lineup:

Castro SS, Barney 2B, Rizzo 1B, Schierholtz RF, Sweeney CF, Bogusevic LF, Valbuena 3B, Castillo C, Arrieta P

Brewers lineup:

Aoki RF, Segura SS, Lucroy C, Ramirez 3B, Gennett 2B, Gindl LF, Francisco 1B, Schafer CF, Hellweg P

Today's Starting Pitchers

Jake Arrieta

Jake Arrieta


Cubs

vs. Johnny Hellweg

Johnny Hellweg


Brewers

vs. Mil

--

vs. Cubs


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2013 - Jake Arrieta 3-3 10 10 0 0 0 0 52.1 43 31 31 5 34 44 5.33 1.47


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2013 - Johnny Hellweg 0-3 4 3 0 0 0 0 10.2 19 20 13 0 13 3 10.97 3.00

Jake Arrieta made his Cubs debut against the Brewers in the second game of a doubleheader July 30. The Cubs lost the game, but never mind that. Arrieta threw six strong innings, allowing just two hits and one run (a home run by Juan Francisco). A repeat of that performance would be nice; Arrieta has a shot at the 2014 rotation and continued good starts would help his case. The numbers above are Arrieta's full-season stats; here are his Cubs-only numbers:


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2013 - Jake Arrieta 2-1 5 5 0 0 0 0 28.2 18 12 12 3 17 21 3.77 1.22

Johnny Hellweg had a decent year at Triple-A Louisville in the Brewers organization -- caveat, he walked 81 batters in 125⅔ innings there. He has continued doing that in his four appearances (three starts) with Milwaukee -- 13 walks and only three strikeouts in 10⅔ innings. Be patient today, Cubs hitters.

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.

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.

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