Since 2007, the Cubs have won one series in Dodger Stadium (in 2011) and overall are 8-15 there in that time span.
With the Dodgers as hot as they are, it seems improbable that the Cubs could actually win this series. But the Cubs have played well on the road this year -- at 31-35, they rank seventh in the NL in road record, better than two teams with winning records (Diamondbacks, Nationals) -- so the answer is, "Who knows?"
This is an unusual afternoon game at Dodger Stadium; both teams have Thursday off and the Dodgers are heading to San Diego, not a long trip. Thus it's a nice thing for the Dodgers to give the Cubs extra travel time back to Chicago. Wish more teams would do this.
Finally, former Cubs manager Lou Piniella turns 70 today. Paul Sullivan caught up with him in Tampa; that article's behind a paywall, but it does contain this nugget:
"Three winning seasons in a row with the Cubs is nothing to be ashamed of," he said. "And the last year, a lot of things happened, including Mom (being sick). Look, she needed me home and I did what I had to do. Look, to this day I wish my career hadn't ended that way. But, look, you've got to do what you've got to do. I had a chance to stay there (in 2011) if I wanted to. People don't really realize that."
So apparently, if Lou's mom hadn't been so ill, he'd likely have been retained for 2011. It would have spared us Mike Quade, at least.
Castro ss, Barney 2b, Rizzo 1b, Schierholtz rf, Bogusevic lf, Lake cf, Castillo c, Ransom 3b, Jackson p
Well, that's an odd choice. Cody Ransom over Donnie Murphy? Maybe it's a farewell gift.
Puig RF, Crawford LF, Ramirez SS, Ethier CF, Hairston 1B, M. Ellis 2B, Uribe 3B, Federowicz C, Nolasco P
Today's Starting Pitchers
|2013 - Edwin Jackson||7-13||25||25||0||0||0||0||144.0||157||91||80||11||49||112||5.00||1.43|
|2013 - Ricky Nolasco||10-9||27||27||0||0||0||0||165.2||159||68||63||16||39||130||3.42||1.20|
Oddly enough, the last time Edwin Jackson faced the Dodgers was more than two years ago -- in an interleague game, while he was a member of the White Sox. He wound up with the win May 22, 2011, but I think you'll recognize that game as typical Jackson -- 107 pitches in less than six innings. With Jackson's erratic year, it's hard to predict what he'll do, but it would appear to be about time for one of his good outings. Let's hope so.
Ricky Nolasco faced the Cubs August 1 at Wrigley Field. He left trailing, but the man who pinch-hit for him drove in two runs and Nolasco wound up with the win anyway. That was the game in which the Cubs scored four runs, all on solo homers -- two by Junior Lake, both off Nolasco, and two by Anthony Rizzo, one off Nolasco. I guess we'd take that today, but a bit more offense (the Cubs had only one other hit in that game) would be nice, too.
Today's game is on CSN Chicago.
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.