I'll be missing the games today and tomorrow at Wrigley Field.
There's a good reason for that. My son is graduating from Indiana University (and yes, he's a big Kyle Schwarber fan), so I'll be spending those two days at the ceremonies in Bloomington.
I'll be back at Wrigley Field for Sunday night's game. Josh will be handling the game recaps today and tomorrow.
Hopefully, I'll be back at the ballpark Sunday awaiting a Cubs sweep.
About this series itself, the Yankees, as noted in the series preview, are a bit of a surprise. As happened for the Cubs last year, their young players are producing and helping the team win, especially Aaron Judge. Seems to me that if Cubs pitching can stop him, this series should go the Cubs' way. Hope the scouting reports on him are up-to-date.
The weather this weekend is going to continue to be chilly and windy.
Before this afternoon's game, Aroldis Chapman will receive his World Series ring in an on-field ceremony. The Cubs are also planning a video board tribute to Starlin Castro, who I hope will be received warmly by Cubs fans.
Here are today’s particulars.
Schwarber LF, Bryant 3B, Rizzo 1B, Zobrist 3B, Russell SS, Heyward RF, Contreras C, Hendricks P, Jay CF
Gardner LF, Hicks CF, Sanchez C, Castro 2B, Judge LF, Gregorius SS, Headley 3B, Carter 1B, Pineda P
Kyle Hendricks vs. Michael Pineda
After a rough start to his season, Kyle Hendricks had a good outing in his last start, last weekend against the Red Sox. He has never faced the Yankees, but he needs to watch out for Matt Holliday, who is 7-for-15 lifetime against him with three home runs. As always, Hendricks' best games come when he can locate well and get his sinker working. Last time out, his fastball velocity seemed back to where it was last year. Keep that going and good things will happen.
Michael Pineda had a rough year in 2016, but is off to an excellent start this year. He has issued only four walks in 28⅔ innings, so the Cubs will have to be prepared to put the ball in play. Other teams' hitters have been able to do that -- Pineda has allowed five home runs already this year. Pineda's only career start against the Cubs was April 16, 2014 at Yankee Stadium. He threw six shutout innings, but the only Cub hitter remaining from that game is Anthony Rizzo. Check out the boxscore to see how far the Cubs have come in three years.
Today's game is on CSN Chicago. It’s also on MLB Network outside the Chicago and New York markets.
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The 2017 Game Thread procedure will be the same as the one used during 2016. 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.
Get tickets to Cubs games from our partner Stubhub here.
Discuss amongst yourselves.