Cubs vs. Pirates Preview, Sunday 6/22, 1:20 CT

It rained a lot Saturday before the game started. - Al Yellon

The Cubs once again go for a series win at Wrigley Field.

Yes, I'm going to start this again. I'd like all of you to read this article on the smokeless tobacco controversy. It's by Dirk Hayhurst. Who is an excellent writer, and is also a former big-league player, which gives him considerable credibility in writing about this issue. Here's his conclusion:

It is utterly, indefensibly hypocritical for the players union and the players in it to, on the grounds of moral integrity, outlaw the consumption of, and association with a substance for one group of people but not follow through with the policies themselves. Please, if you're going agree to rules, make them count or don't make them at all.

I'd like to believe that when the next round of mandatory meetings about substance abuse happens, the pics they inevitably show of Tony Gywnn won't be ones connected to making the right personal choice thanks to a scare tactic, but to an initiative that helps the addicts that baseball's long-standing relationship with smokeless tobacco has helped create. I'd like to believe that it will be a message of accountability. Anything else would just be more of the same, don't-make-us-look-bad bullshit that so many of baseball's rules are already known to be.

A legend is dead. Honor him with accountability.

Couldn't agree more. Let's hope MLB listens. Now, on to today's particulars.

Cubs lineup:

Coghlan LF, Sweeney CF, Rizzo 1B, Castro SS, Valbuena 3B, Schierholtz RF, Baker C, Barney 2B, Hammel P

The Pirates lineup was not available at the time I wrote this post. Check the BCB Twitter feed for the Pirates lineup.

Today's Starting Pitchers

Jason Hammel

Jason Hammel


Cubs

vs. Brandon Cumpton

Brandon Cumpton


Pirates

vs. Pit

--

vs. Cubs

Here we have another pitching rematch, this time of the game June 11 in Pittsburgh. Jason Hammel got hit over and over and over -- 11 hits in all, including a two-run homer by Andrew McCutchen that proved to be the difference in the game. Brandon Cumpton managed to last five innings, which was enough for an individual "win." Luis Valbuena had three hits off him that night.

Today's game is on WGN.

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 Pirates site Bucs Dugout.

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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