SCOTTSDALE, Arizona -- This pitching matchup is intriguing, and both pitchers should be on target to throw six innings.
John Lackey has thrown in only two big-league spring games, eight innings' worth, and allowed five earned runs, with only one walk and eight strikeouts. He had an excellent six-inning outing in a minor-league game on Monday.
Jeff Samardzija has been pretty bad this spring -- 19 innings, 27 hits (1.632 WHIP), 18 earned runs for an 8.53 ERA. Believe it or not, that's the second best spring ERA of any of the five expected Giants starters (Jake Peavy, 8.31; Madison Bumgarner, 11.12; Johnny Cueto, 9.58; Matt Cain, 12.15).
Spring numbers, yeah, I know, but yeesh, those are bad. Hopefully the Cubs bats take advantage this afternoon.
Also, one final note on Friday's Cubs Wives memorabilia sale/auction at Sloan Park:
#Cubs wives raised $15,000 at Friday's auction, including $900 for the Schwarber busted windshield. $$$ benefits Paz de Cristo in Mesa— Carrie Muskat (@CarrieMuskat) March 26, 2016
The windshield will be displayed at the Chicago Sports Museum, run by Harry Caray's at Water Tower Place.
Here are the rest of today's particulars.
Fowler CF, Russell SS, Schwarber LF, Soler RF, Montero C, Candelario 3B, Kawasaki 2B, Guzman 1B, Lackey P
Tommy La Stella and Matt Szczur are on the Cubs sub list for today.
The Giants lineup was not available at the time I wrote this preview. Please check the BCB Twitter feed for the Giants lineup.
John Lackey starts for the Cubs this afternoon. Others on the Cubs list today: Pedro Strop, Hector Rondon, Manny Parra and Jean Machi. This will be the first time Strop and Rondon will go on back-to-back days.
Jeff Samardzija gets the call for the Giants.
Today's game is on 670 The Score with Pat Hughes and Ron Coomer. It will also be televised on WGN-TV with Len Kasper and Jim Deshaies, and the WGN telecast will be carried nationally on MLB Network.
Please visit our SB Nation Giants site McCovey Chronicles. If you do go there to interact with Giants 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.
Please note that during spring training, Gameday doesn't usually go pitch-by-pitch as it does during the regular season -- usually, it will update after each at-bat.
For spring-training games, we'll have a first-pitch thread at five minutes to game time and one overflow thread, 90 minutes after game time (because I know how you all like overflow threads!). For today, that will be 3 p.m. CT and 4:30 p.m. CT.
These threads will not post individually onto the front page; instead, you can find links to them in the box marked "Chicago Cubs Game Threads" at the bottom of the front page. There will also be a StoryStream on the front page with all the game thread links, as well as the recap after the game is over. The pitcher boxes and regular-season stats will return on Opening Day.
Discuss amongst yourselves.