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Chicago Cubs vs. New York Mets Preview, Saturday 7/7, 3:10 CT

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Anthony Rizzo of the Chicago Cubs is greeted by Darwin Barney after hitting a three-run homer against the New York Mets at Citi Field in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City.  (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
Anthony Rizzo of the Chicago Cubs is greeted by Darwin Barney after hitting a three-run homer against the New York Mets at Citi Field in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
Getty Images

SOMEWHERE IN IOWA -- I'm on I-80 as this preview posts, heading for Des Moines to see the Iowa Cubs take on the Omaha Storm Chasers at Principal Park, on my way to Kansas City for the All-Star festivities.

Looking forward to seeing Brett Jackson, Josh Vitters and some of the other guys who might be part of the team's future. I'm not sure exactly where I'm sitting tonight but I'll send it out via the BCB Twitter feed later this afternoon.

Because this is posting while I'm on the road, I didn't have lineups available to put in the usual spot, right here. If you find them, feel free to post them in the comments. Or, again, check the BCB Twitter feed; I'll try to tweet them later.

Since I'll be at the Iowa game tonight (7 pm CT), the recap of this afternoon's Cubs game will be delayed, likely until Sunday morning. I didn't think you'd mind. I'll also recap what I see at the Triple-A game. If the Cubs win this afternoon, they'd clinch a winning road trip and also win just their second road series of 2012. Baby steps.

Today's Starting Pitchers
Jeff Samardzija
Jeff Samardzija
Cubs
vs. Dillon Gee
Dillon Gee
Mets
6-7 W-L 5-7
4.77 ERA 4.34
96 SO 93
35 BB 29
9 HR 12
vs. NY -- vs. Cubs

W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2012 - Jeff Samardzija 6-7 18 16 0 0 0 0 94.1 94 52 50 9 35 96 4.77 1.37


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2012 - Dillon Gee 5-7 16 16 0 0 0 0 101.2 101 55 49 12 29 93 4.34 1.28

Jeff Samardzija's last outing against the Mets was June 27 at Wrigley Field. Of that game, the less said, the better, I think. It was the most runs Shark had ever given up in a start, and the last of a four-start stretch in which he posted a 12.27 ERA. His last start, against the Astros at Wrigley last weekend, was much better. Let's hope that's the future; Shark still has talent, just needs to be more consistent. Despite the somewhat high ERA, his WHIP is a reasonable 1.36 and he's striking out 9.2 per nine innings. That's good, but the 3.3 walks per nine innings is 15th-most in the NL. That's what has to improve.

Dillon Gee was the starting pitcher for the Mets June 26 at Wrigley Field, the day Anthony Rizzo made his MLB debut. Rizzo singled and doubled off Gee; the Cubs got nine hits in all off him and won the game. A repeat would be nice, but don't count on it.

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 Mets site Amazin' Avenue.

Today's first pitch thread will post at 3:10 p.m. CDT and the overflows at 4:10, 5:10 and 5:55 p.m. CDT. If you need more overflows due to extra innings or rain delays, post them in the fanshot section.

Discuss amongst yourselves.