The Cubs enter play today leading the Cardinals by 7½ games and the Pirates by eight. The Cardinals got rained out in St. Louis Wednesday night and must play a split doubleheader today against the Padres. When the Cubs had to do just that back in May, they got swept. Hopefully the same thing happens to the Cardinals today.
Meanwhile, if the Cubs take care of business against the Mets, they'll have another series win and a 4-2 homestand. That works for me.
Here are today's particulars.
Zobrist RF, Bryant 3B, Rizzo 1B, Contreras LF, Heyward CF, Russell SS, Montero C, Baez 2B, Hendricks P
Reyes SS, Granderson RF, Flores 3B, Loney 1B, d'Arnaud C, Johnson 2B, Lagares CF, Conforto LF, Colon P
Kyle Hendricks was the only Cubs starter who did not pitch in the series at Citi Field earlier this year. Maybe that's good; he missed the carnage. He's also been very good over his last six starts: 0.87 ERA, 1.065 WHIP, 28 strikeouts in 31 innings. Current members of the Mets are a small-sample-size 6-for-31 (.194) against Hendricks (not including his four-inning, two-run start against them in the NLCS).
Bartolo Colon... man, he just keeps on going. He had a solid outing against the Cubs July 2 at Citi Field and overall has produced 2.4 bWAR in 2016, besides making the All-Star team for the second time in the last four years. Current Cubs are 19-for-65 (.292) against him with two home runs (Jason Heyward, Anthony Rizzo).
Today's game is on ABC7 Chicago. For affiliate info in the Illinois/Iowa/Indiana blackout markets click here. Outside the Chicago and New York markets this game will also be carried on ESPN.
Here is the complete MLB.com Mediacenter for today.
Baseball-reference.com game preview
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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.