The Cubs, despite losing four in a row and being a game under .500, are still just two games out of first place in the N.L. Central after the Brewers lost to the Diamondbacks late Saturday night.
There's still plenty of time -- and in my view, plenty of talent -- for the Cubs to turn this season around.
But let's start that today, shall we?
Here are today’s particulars.
Jay CF, Bryant 3B, Rizzo 1B, Zobrist 2B, Heyward RF, Baez 2B, Montero C, Russell SS, Arrieta P
Blackmon CF, LeMahieu 2B, Gonzalez RF, Reynolds 1B, Desmond LF, Story SS, Valaika 3B, Winters C, Senzatela P
Jake Arrieta vs. Antonio Senzatela
This game is a pitching rematch of the first game of a doubleheader May 9 in Denver. Trust me, you do not want to click on that link. (Don't say I didn't warn you.)
Jake Arrieta has actually pitched pretty well since that game: five starts, 3.30 ERA, 1.067 WHIP, 32 strikeouts in 30 innings -- essentially the pitcher he was last year. We'd take that kind of performance from him for the rest of this season, I'd think.
Conversely, Antonio Senzatela has been somewhat worse since he shut down the Cubs in that game in Denver -- five starts, 4.60 ERA, 1.295 WHIP, five home runs in 29⅓ innings. Senzatela's ERA is a run higher on the road (4.18) than at home (3.18), which is counterintuitive, but might be to the Cubs' benefit today.
I'm reaching, I know. But it seems as if this matchup might be favorable to the Cubs.
Today's game is on WGN.
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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.
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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.
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Discuss amongst yourselves.