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Chicago Cubs vs. Miami Marlins preview, Friday 6/23, 6:10 CT

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The Cubs go for two straight over the Marlins.

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Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

The Cubs' current stretch has been called by some a "20-game road trip" through New York, Pittsburgh, Chicago, Miami, Washington and Cincinnati. Don't think I can recall another stretch in recent years where the Cubs were home for only three out of 20 games.

They are 6-4 halfway through this stretch. If they can go 6-4 or even 7-3 in the remaining 10 games, I'd call it a success.

Starting pitching has improved over this time. Over the last nine games Cubs starters have a 2.84 ERA -- a significant improvement over the nine games prior to that, in which the starters posted a 5.80 ERA.

Keep that up and I believe good things will happen.

Here are today’s particulars.

Cubs lineup:

Rizzo 1B, Bryant 3B, Happ RF, Russell SS, Montero C, Baez 2B, Almora CF, Lackey P, Jay LF

Marlins lineup:

Gordon 2B, Stanton RF, Yelich CF, Ozuna LF, Bour 1B, Prado 3B, Realmuto C, Riddle SS, Urena P

John Lackey vs. Jose Urena

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Like last night's game, this one is a pitching rematch of a game at Wrigley Field, June 7. The Cubs lost the game 6-5, Lackey got charged with all five runs including homers by J.T. Realmuto and Marcell Ozuna.

Ian Happ homered off Urena.

Since then Lackey has one mediocre start and one good one. Urena has two pretty good starts since that one.

Here's hoping for a better result for the Cubs tonight.

Today's game is on WGN.

Here is the complete MLB.com Mediacenter for today.

MLB.com Gameday

Baseball-reference.com game preview

SB Nation game preview

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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.

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Discuss amongst yourselves.