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Chicago Cubs vs. Detroit Tigers Preview, Tuesday 6/9, 6:08 CT

The Cubs will play their first 2015 game in an American League Park tonight.

Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Yes, "6:08." (Or, in reality, 7:08 Detroit time.)

I have asked the managers over at SBN's Tigers site, Bless You Boys, why the odd starting time, and both of them answered:


As if anyone would notice if they said "7:05" and the first pitch happened a couple of minutes later. Or why they don't just move it to 7:10, as quite a number of other teams have, if squeezing more ads into the TV broadcasts is the point.

You might recall that the White Sox had 7:11 as a starting time for a year or two, but they were getting paid by the 7-11 company for doing that. Not very much, as I recall, which is why that sponsorship eventually ended.

So this is a mystery that might never be solved.

Here is your once-a-series reminder about SB Nation's partner daily fantasy game, FanDuel. If you want to participate, here's the link.

Cubs lineup:

Fowler CF, Rizzo 1B, Bryant 3B, Montero DH, Denorfia LF, Castro SS, Lake RF, Ross C, Russell 2B

Tigers lineup:

Davis CF, Kinsler 2B, Cabrera 1B, Cespedes LF, J.D. Martinez RF, Castellanos DH, McCann C, Wilson 3B, Iglesias SS

We are used to seeing a McCann catching -- Brian McCann, who used to be with the Braves. This is James McCann, who is in his first full year in the majors and who took over from the injured Alex Avila. The two McCanns are not related, as far as I know.

Today's Starting Pitchers

Jon Lester

Jon Lester


vs. Anibal Sanchez

Anibal Sanchez


vs. Det


vs. Cubs

The Detroit Tigers have been one of Jon Lester's particular nemeses for most of his career. In nine starts he has a 4.83 ERA and 1.648 WHIP against them and nine home runs allowed in 54 innings. His teams have won only three of the nine starts. Current members of the Tigers have hit six home runs off him in 140 at-bats, and Miguel Cabrera is hitting .522 (12-for-23) against him with four doubles and one of the homers. Clearly, we are doomed.

Or not, because Anibal Sanchez, a one-time Cubs free-agent target, is having a horrific year. I mean, he's had a couple of good starts, including this one where he allowed the Yankees only one hit in 6⅓ innings (and the Tigers bullpen blew the game) and this one, eight solid innings against the Twins. But since that May 14 start vs. the Twins, Sanchez has a 7.71 ERA and 1.543 WHIP and seven (!) home runs allowed in 23⅓ innings. Current Cubs are a small-sample-size 12-for-61 (.197) against Sanchez with two home runs (Anthony Rizzo and David Ross).

Today's game is on CSN Chicago. In most of the USA this game will also be seen on MLB Network. Check your local cable/satellite listings.

Here is the complete Mediacenter for today. Gameday game preview

SB Nation game preview

Please visit our SB Nation Tigers site Bless You Boys. If you do go there to interact with Tigers fans, please be respectful, abide by their individual site rules and serve as a good representation of Cub fans in general and BCB in particular.

The 2015 Game Thread procedure has changed a bit. Here's how it will work going forward.

You'll find the game preview posted separately on the front page, two hours before game time (90 minutes for some early day games following night games).

At the same time, a StoryStream™ containing the preview will also post on the front page. The First Pitch Thread and all the overflow threads will be published in that stream, as well as the recap. The recap will also live on the front page as a separate post, and at the time I write the recap I will rename the stream "Cubs vs. (Team) (Day of Week) Game Threads" so you can go back and find every thread related to that particular game.

You will also be able to find the preview, First Pitch Thread, all the overflow threads and recap 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 the game's StoryStream™ as noted above.

The First Pitch thread will post at five minutes before game time, then an overflow thread at one hour, two hours and 2:45 after the scheduled game time.

Discuss amongst yourselves.