I had a look through the White Sox ticketing page for this game this morning. There are still literally thousands of tickets available for today's game; I would expect that the total announced tickets sold will be around 30,000, maybe a bit more, but that's 10,000 under capacity at the Cell. Unless Cubs fans start buying up these tickets in large quantities, there will be tons of empty seats this afternoon.
Saturday's game will be close to sold out; Sunday has a fair number of tickets available, not quite as many as Friday.
Guess Sox fans aren't quite convinced that their team has a playoff run in it.
Also, this afternoon the Cubs and Sox will again wear throwback uniforms to honor Ernie Banks and Minnie Minoso, as the teams did at Wrigley last month. This time they will be wearing uniforms patterned after the 1959 team uniforms, the year the Sox made the World Series and, for the Cubs, Banks' second MVP season.
Finally, 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.
Here are today's particulars.
Fowler CF, Schwarber DH, Coghlan LF, Rizzo 1B, Bryant 3B, Montero C, Denorfia RF, Castro 2B, Russell SS
White Sox lineup:
Eaton CF, Saladino 3B, Abreu 1B, Cabrera LF, Garcia RF, LaRoche DH, Ramirez SS, Sanchez 2B, Soto C
Today's Starting Pitchers
Kyle Hendricks threw one of his best games of 2015 against the White Sox July 10 at Wrigley Field, throwing seven shutout innings and allowing just five singles. I'd like another one of those, please, especially since Hendricks has been a bit shaky since the All-Star break (4.34 ERA in five starts, with 10 walks in 29 innings, uncharacteristic for him). With the off day this week, that gives him an extra day's rest; perhaps that will help him get back on track.
I suppose I don't have to tell you much about Jeff Samardzija; his seven years in a Cubs uniform made all of us quite familiar with him. He has, at times, been excellent this year. And he has, at other times, been awful, including his last two starts. He didn't make it out of the fifth inning in either one of them and combined threw 9⅓ innings and allowed 16 earned runs. He has a 6.96 ERA since the All-Star break with five home runs allowed in 32⅓ innings. That's the Shark we'd like to see this afternoon.
Today's game is on CSN Chicago.
Here is the complete MLB.com Mediacenter for today.
Baseball-reference.com game preview
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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.