Here's something that was kind of lost in the excitement over Jake Arrieta's no-hitter Thursday night -- the Cubs' 16-0 blowout of the Reds, just the fifth time since 1929 any Cubs team has scored 16 or more runs in a shutout.
The blowout increased the Cubs' run differential to +60. After 16 games. That's almost a four-run differential per game -- the equivalent of winning every game so far 6-2.
And there's also this:
Sure, the Cubs +60 run differential is the highest in MLB but take away 9-0 and 16-0 wins and ... it's still highest in MLB.— Cubs No-Hit Streak (@CubsNoHitStreak) April 22, 2016
Finally, here is the current status of every major-league team and how many consecutive games it's been since they've been no-hit. There have now been four teams no-hit since the Cubs were no-hit last July 25.
Here are today's particulars.
Fowler CF, Heyward RF, Bryant LF, Rizzo 1B, Zobrist 2B, Baez 3B, Russell SS, Ross C, Lester P
Cozart SS, Suarez 3B, Votto 1B, Phillips 2B, Mesoraco C, Bruce RF, Duvall LF, Holt CF, Moscot P
Jon Lester is off to a fine start this year, and last year at GABP he posted a 2.57 ERA in two starts, with 19 strikeouts in 14 innings. Current Reds are hitting .268 (22-for-82) with two home runs -- Billy Hamilton, who is 5-for-7 lifetime vs. Lester, and Eugenio Suarez. Fortunately for Lester, Hamilton, who suffered a minor injury Wednesday, isn't playing tonight.
Jon Moscot is making his fifth major-league start. He had three in June 2015, and one five days ago against the Cardinals. He's yet another in the Reds' parade of young pitchers; he was their fourth-round pick in 2012, and his minor-league numbers translate as "meh." He has never faced the Cubs nor anyone on the Cubs' current big-league roster. Also, he looks like he should still be in high school.
Today's game is on WGN.
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The 2016 Game Thread procedure will be the same as the one used at the end of 2015. Here's how it works.
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.