Well, hello, old friends!
The Cubs haven't faced the Brewers since June 1. More than two months and 62 games (61 for the Brewers) have gone by since then. Interestingly, the Cubs have played just 1½ games worse than Milwaukee during that span (30-32 for the Cubs, 31-30 for the Brewers). That's good!
Perhaps more interesting is the boxscore from that June 1 game. Including disabled-list placements, seven of the 15 Cubs who played in that game aren't on the team now. Four are gone through trades (Jeff Samardzija, James Russell, Emilio Bonifacio, Darwin Barney), one via DFA (Nate Schierholtz), one sent to the minor leagues (Mike Olt) and one on the DL (Brian Schlitter).
This is a time of massive turnover for the Cubs. I expect many more changes before 2015. Heck, there might even be more before the next time these two teams meet in September. The Cubs have a real chance to have an effect on the N.L. Central race, as 29 of the 46 remaining games are within the division.
If you have not yet read Russ La Croix' excellent series preview, now's the time!
Also, just a reminder to check out (if you haven't already) SB Nation's partner fantasy site, Fan Duel, where you can win real money. Here's the link.
On to tonight's particulars:
Coghlan LF, Baez 2B, Rizzo 1B, Castro SS, Valbuena 3B, Alcantara CF, Ruggiano RF, Castillo C, Arrieta P
Gomez CF, Lucroy C, Braun RF, Ramirez 3B, Gennett 2B, Davis LF, Reynolds 1B, Segura SS, Gallardo P
Today's Starting Pitchers
Jake Arrieta had the worst start of his Cubs career last time out. I'm going to chalk that up to the Coors Field Effect and Arrieta not being able to get his breaking ball to work there. He has not faced the Brewers this year, but you might remember his very first start as a Cub, against the Brewers July 30, 2013 at Wrigley Field, where he allowed just two hits in six innings (before the bullpen blew the lead). More of that, please.
The Cubs haven't faced Yovani Gallardo this season. He's having a decent year, though got hit pretty hard in his last outing against the Giants. Current Cubs are 35-for-98 (.357) against him with one home run (Ryan Sweeney). Starlin Castro is 14-for-37 (.378) with three doubles off Gallardo. Perhaps we're not doomed tonight.
Today's game is on CSN Chicago.
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.