SCOTTSDALE, Arizona -- Entering today's final Cactus League game, the Cubs have the second-worst record (9-17; the Padres are worst at 9-19). The Rockies, today's opponent, are third-best among Arizona spring teams at 14-10.
Does this mean a thing? No. No, it does not. After today, these two teams will meet again in a couple of weeks at Wrigley Field. At that time, barring rainouts, both teams will have played nine regular-season games. Does anyone here think the Rockies will have a better record than the Cubs at that point?
So, one more tune-up in the sunshine (which has returned) of Arizona, before three more practice games, and then, at last, we can get to the 2016 regular season. I'm sure you're more than ready.
Here are today's particulars.
Schwarber LF, Bryant 3B, Rizzo 1B, Soler RF, La Stella 2B, Russell SS, Szczur CF, Ross C, Lester P
Dexter Fowler, still out. Hopefully back this weekend.
Parra CF, Story SS, Gonzalez RF, Arenado 3B, Paulsen 1B, Hundley C, Tapia LF, Valaika 2B, De La Rosa P
Valaika. Hmmm. That name looks familiar, right? It's not Chris Valaika, though -- he's the hitting coach for the Cubs' Mesa team in the Arizona Rookie League. This is Chris' younger brother Pat Valaika, who was the Rockies' ninth-round pick in the 2003 draft. He's 23 and played last year at Double-A.
The Rockies are a split squad today, though quite a number of their regulars are in this lineup.
Jon Lester starts for the Cubs today. Clayton Richard is the only reliever on the Cubs list today, so look for Lester to possibly go seven innings.
Jorge De La Rosa starts for the Rockies. Others on the Rockies pitching list today: Boone Logan, Jake McGee, Sam Moll, Chad Qualls, Miguel Castro, Matt Carasiti and Ryan Arrowood. (Looks like the Rox still have some bullpen decisions to make!)
Today's game is on cubs.com with Len Kasper and Mick Gillispie. This is the last Cubs game this year that will not be televised.
Please visit our SB Nation Rockies site Purple Row. If you do go there to interact with Rockies 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.