TORONTO -- Today marks exactly 49 years since the Cubs were last no-hit; that famous game, Sandy Koufax's perfect game, is also the lowest combined hit total for two teams in one game in major-league history. The Cubs' Bob Hendley threw a one-hitter, and the hit had nothing to do with the Dodgers' run in their 1-0 win; L.A. scored on a walk, a sacrifice bunt, a steal and a throwing error. It was the second time the Cubs had been no-hit in three weeks; Jim Maloney of the Reds did it August 19, 1965 at Wrigley Field in the first game of a doubleheader, the last visiting pitcher to throw one there.
The no-no-hit streak now stands at a record 7,807 games going into tonight. If you don't follow the terrific @cubsnohitstreak Twitter account, you should.
Note about tonight's game: The loss Monday night dropped the Cubs to .500 (9-9) in interleague play this year. A win tonight would assure the Cubs of at least an even split with American League teams in 2014.
Note about the coming weekend: Travis Wood is having his start pushed back, so Jacob Turner will start against the Pirates Sunday in Pittsburgh, and Wood will go against the Reds Monday at Wrigley Field.
Site note: posting of images in comments is temporarily disabled, per a note we received from SB Nation support. I'll let you know when it's back.
Coghlan LF, Baez SS, Soler RF, Valbuena 3B, Castillo C, Olt DH, Alcantara 2B, Valaika 1B, Szczur CF
I don't usually make a big deal about complaining about lineups, but consider this: IF you are going to have Mike Olt and Chris Valaika in the same lineup, why is the worse defensive player of the two playing the field?
Blue Jays lineup:
Reyes SS, Bautista RF, Encarnacion 1B, Lind DH, Navarro C, Valencia 3B, Pillar LF, Goins 2B, Gose CF
Today's Starting Pitchers
Despite the fact that these two teams haven't met in six years, both starting pitchers tonight are quite familiar with their opponent.
Jake Arrieta has made six career appearances (five starts) against the Blue Jays with a 6.00 ERA and three starts at the Rogers Centre with an even higher ERA, 7.33. However, it's been more than two years since he's faced Toronto and this is a new Arrieta. Right?
Well, probably. No current member of the Blue Jays has more than 10 at-bats against Arrieta, and the one who does -- Melky Cabrera -- is 0-for-10. Overall current Jays are 10-for-67 (.149) against Arrieta, who had a good outing in his last start against the Brewers.
Cubs fans are quite familiar with Mark Buehrle from his many years with the White Sox, during which he made 13 starts against the Cubs; he also started two games against them while with the Marlins in 2012. Because of the roster turnover and injuries, only three current Cubs -- Chris Coghlan (who was a Marlins teammate of Buehrle's as well), Luis Valbuena and Ryan Kalish -- have ever faced him.
Buehrle is having a decent season, but it was better before the All-Star break. Since then he has posted a 6.20 ERA and 1.820 WHIP in eight starts covering only 40⅔ innings. Even this injury-depleted Cubs team ought to be able to hit him.
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.