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Open Thread: Cubs vs. Astros, Sunday 7/15, 1:20 CT

Two weeks ago, the Cubs set an all-time attendance record for a three-game series: 124,810 paid to see the set with Milwaukee.

With crowds of 41,448 yesterday and 41,593 on Friday, if today's attendance is 41,770 or more, which is a distinct possibility given the good play of the team and this spectacular weather forecast:

Today: Mostly sunny, with a high near 82. North wind around 5 mph becoming calm.
... that record would fall today.

Cliff Floyd strained his shoulder yesterday and Lou Piniella said it "didn't look good" after the game. Giving Floyd a day off wouldn't be a bad idea, especially with the lefthanded Wandy Rodriguez going. I wouldn't be surprised to see Mark DeRosa in RF today, particularly since he is hitting .411 (23-for-56) since June 25, best in the NL since that date.

Today's Starting Pitchers
Jason Marquis
J. Marquis
vs. Wandy Rodriguez
W. Rodriguez
6-5 W-L 6-7
3.67 ERA 3.87
62 SO 90
41 BB 26
12 HR 12
vs. Hou -- vs. Cubs
The last start for both these pitchers was nine days ago. Jason Marquis hasn't thrown that well in the last couple of months, and the July 6 outing vs. the Pirates was one of his worst of the year. However, at home he is 4-2, 3.20, allowing only 3 HR, whereas on the road he's 2-3, 4.21, 9 HR allowed, in the same number of starts (nine) home and away. Keep him away from Lance Berkman (.586/.692/.897, 17-for-29, four doubles, a triple and a HR), and Morgan Ensberg (.457/.486/.743, 16-for-35, 3 HR).

On the other hand, Marquis himself is 3-for-4 in his career vs. Rodriguez, and hit one of his two HR prior to this year off him on June 4, 2005, the year he hit .310/.326/.460 with 8 doubles, a HR and 10 RBI in 87 AB. Derrek Lee is 4-for-7 with 2 doubles and a HR off Rodriguez, and it's time the Cubs' RH power turned itself on, wouldn't you say?

Today's game is on WGN, on EI, and at the Mediacenter. Gameday (2007 version) Gameday (2006 version)

Discuss amongst yourselves.