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Chicago Cubs vs. Arizona Diamondbacks preview, Wednesday 8/2, 7:05 CT

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The Cubs go for their fourth consecutive victory.

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Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

In the afterglow of Jon Lester’s big day at the plate Tuesday, here are a couple of fun Lester hitting facts:

Among pitchers who have at least as many at-bats as Lester does this year (40), he has the third-highest slugging percentage (.275).

Kyle Freeland (.293) and Jacob deGrom (.314) are the only ones higher — and Lester has three XBH this year and the others have only two.

Only two pitchers this year have more than three XBH: Adam Wainwright and Luis Perdomo both have four.

According to his baseball-reference page, Lester has provided 0.2 bWAR as a hitter this year. Fangraphs says 0.3 fWAR. Well done.

Here are today’s particulars.

Cubs lineup:

Zobrist 2B, Bryant 3B, Rizzo 1B, Schwarber LF, Avila C, Russell SS, Heyward RF, Jay CF, Arrieta P

Diamondbacks lineup:

Peralta LF, Pollock CF, Lamb 3B, Goldschmidt 1B, Martinez RF, Descalso 2B, Iannetta C, Reinheimer SS, Godley P

Jake Arrieta vs. Zack Godley

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

At last, Jake Arrieta is starting to resemble the 2016 version, which is just fine (even if it’s not the 2015 version, which would be nearly impossible to duplicate). His BB and K rates are similar to last year, and he had an excellent July: 2.25 ERA, 0.844 WHIP in five starts covering 32 innings.

Jake made two starts vs. the D-backs last year and allowed six runs in 12 innings, with 18 strikeouts. Current members of the D-backs are hitting .230 (23-for-100) with two home runs. Paul Goldschmidt is 4-for-13 (.308) against Jake with one of those homers.

Zack Godley was one of two minor leaguers traded to Arizona for Miguel Montero before the 2015 season. (The other one, Jeferson Mejia, is still in the D-backs organization, in A ball.) At the time Godley had not pitched above Advanced-A, but he was in the big leagues by mid-2015 and has turned himself into a pretty reliable member of the D-backs rotation.

He’s gone at least six innings in 10 of his 14 starts and most of the 14 have been decent to good. His only career start vs. the Cubs was September 4, 2015 at Wrigley Field and Cubs hitters pounded him for six runs in 3⅔ innings, including two home runs by Addison Russell.

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.