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Cubs vs. Reds Preview, Saturday 5/4, 12:05 CT: A Little Warmer

The Cubs will try to defeat the Reds again Saturday. While this might not occur, it will at least be a little more pleasant to spend Saturday afternoon outdoors.

USA TODAY Sports Images

People here have asked me occasionally whether I think about not going to a game every now and then. I don't, but when the weather's been as awful as it has been this spring, combined with pretty awful baseball by the North Siders, I have to admit it does get to be a slog. This homestand was supposed to have an off day, which helps recharge, but with the makeup game Monday against the Rangers, it's now 10 straight days.

I say this because if I'm feeling this way, imagine how the players must feel. The weather's not any warmer on the field, and unfortunately, losing winds up breeding losing, just as winning tends to be contagious.

I'm not going to stop going, of course; beyond reporting on the day's events at Wrigley to you, it's a social thing for me; over the years I have made many lifelong friends at the ballpark, and we share things beyond just baseball and the Cubs.

Perhaps today will bring a win. That'd be nice. It will, at least, bring slightly warmer weather (in the 50s instead of the 40s).

Cubs lineup:

Sappelt CF, Ransom 3B, Rizzo 1B, Soriano LF, Castro SS, Castillo C, Hairston RF, Barney 2B, Samardzija P

Ah, yes. The all-RH lineup (plus Anthony Rizzo) that's worked so well vs. LHP so far this year. (That's sarcasm, in case you couldn't tell.)

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

Today's Starting Pitchers

Jeff Samardzija

Jeff Samardzija


vs. Tony Cingrani

Tony Cingrani


vs. Cin


vs. Cubs

2013 - Jeff Samardzija 1-4 6 6 0 0 0 0 37.2 30 15 14 3 14 47 3.35 1.17

2013 - Tony Cingrani 2-0 3 3 0 0 0 0 18.0 12 3 3 2 4 28 1.50 .89

Jeff Samardzija threw six innings, striking out eight, in a game the Cubs wound up losing 1-0 April 24 in Cincinnati. As has been the case with many of his starts, Shark threw too many pitches and had to be lifted fairly early (104 pitches in those six innings). He's gone more than six innings just twice in six starts due primarily to those high pitch counts; I'd rather see him get outs on ground balls than strikeouts, to stay in the game longer.

Tony Cingrani will be making his fourth major-league start this afternoon. Usually that spells "doom" for Cubs hitters, but one of the previous three was against the Cubs April 23 in Cincinnati. He threw seven pretty good innings in a game the Cubs won. Cody Ransom, of all people, homered off him. So at least this Cubs team has seen this young pitcher before.

Today's game is on CSN Chicago.

Here is the complete Mediacenter for today. Gameday game preview

SB Nation game preview

Please visit our SB Nation Reds site Red Reporter. 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.

Discuss amongst yourselves.