Cubs vs. Diamondbacks Preview, Monday 4/21, 7:05 CT

David Banks

The two worst teams in the National League meet in the first of a four-game series.

Something's gotta give.

I'm calling this "The Resistible Force vs. The Movable Object" series. Both these teams have been really, really bad this year. The Cubs have had a pathetic offense which currently ranks 28th in MLB. The D'backs have had awful pitching that has allowed the most runs of any team in baseball -- by a lot, too, 23 more runs than anyone else, and that's after just 21 games.

The D'backs have allowed six or more runs 12 times, and they're 0-12 in those games.

The Cubs have scored six or more runs five times, and they're 4-1 in those games.

Like I said. Something's gotta give. The young child depicted above wants to know what that will be.

Also, you should know that the Tribune is reporting that Louis Reinhart, the 100-year-old fan who missed the chance for game-ball delivery on Opening Day, will be given that opportunity again on June 8.

Cubs lineup:

Bonifacio 2B, Valbuena 3B, Rizzo 1B, Schierholtz RF, Castro SS, Sweeney CF, Castillo C, Kalish LF, Wood P

Diamondbacks lineup:

Owings SS, Hill 2B, Goldschmidt 1B, Prado 3B, Ross RF, Trumbo LF, Montero C, Campana CF, Arroyo P

Hey, look! Our old buddy Tony Campana. Who is hitting .318/.348/.409 in a small-sample-size 23 plate appearances.

Today's Starting Pitchers

Travis Wood

Travis Wood


Cubs

vs. Bronson Arroyo

Bronson Arroyo


Diamondbacks

vs. Ari

--

vs. Cubs

Travis Wood is off to a good start this year. He hasn't faced the D'backs too often -- current members of the team are hitting a small-sample-size 12-for-30 (.400) against him, with one home run (Martin Prado). Conclusions to be drawn? None, probably.

Ah, yes, our old buddy Bronson Arroyo. Enjoying the N.L. West, pal? (Not with that 9.95 ERA coming into today's game, you're not.) The last time the Cubs faced a pitcher who had been off to such a bad start was... yesterday, and that pitcher, Homer Bailey, shut down the Cubs for six innings. Arroyo has a 2.91 lifetime ERA (over 191⅔ innings) against the Cubs, and it's even better in Wrigley Field (2.83). Clearly, we are doomed.

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 Diamondbacks site AZ Snakepit.

For 2014, we are going to have the same game-thread routine as 2013. Here's how it works.

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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