Here’s a big thank-you to the Pittsburgh Pirates, who made the Milwaukee Brewers look bad in a 7-0 win Monday night, which pushed the Brewers to 2½ games behind the Cubs. Tonight, Pirates ace Gerrit Cole will face Brent Suter of the Brewers at Miller Park.
I wanted to say a few words about this Paul Sullivan article, in which he tries to make the Cubs/Mets rivalry like it was in 1969.
And those words are: Give it up, Paul. The Cubs and Mets haven’t really had a rivalry since the two teams were placed in different divisions in 1993. They only play two series a year now, and except for the 2015 NLCS, the Cubs have dominated the Mets in recent years. Since 2011 the Cubs are 26-16 (.619) against the Mets. That’s their best winning percentage against any N.L. team in that time frame. And in that span they are 14-5 against the Mets at Wrigley Field.
I lived through the 1969 season and hated the Mets for a long time after that. But that’s nearly half a century ago. It’s ancient history. The Cubs are winners now; we buried all that other nonsense last November. It’s time to let all that go.
Here’s a note that should make you feel better: The Cubs’ +71 run differential since the All-Star break is still second-best in baseball behind the Indians, whose +144 is crazy good.
Here are today’s particulars.
Zobrist 2B, Bryant 3B, Rizzo 1B, Contreras C, Happ CF, Schwarber LF, Heyward RF, Baez SS, Quintana P
Reyes 2B, Aoki LF, Cabrera 3B, d'Arnaud C, Lagares CF, Smith 1B, Rosario SS, Taijeron RF, Gsellman P
Jose Quintana vs. Robert Gsellman
Jose Quintana has had some clunkers as a Cub, but his last start, last Wednesday against the Pirates, was excellent: six shutout innings, allowing just six singles and a walk, with six strikeouts.
He has one career start against the Mets: May 30, 2016 at Citi Field, which was also an excellent outing: seven innings, six hits, one run, seven strikeouts.
Unfortunately, even that recent outing likely means little, as most of the players in that Mets lineup are either gone from the team or injured, which leaves active players on the Mets roster hitting .269 (14-for-52) against Quintana with no home runs and 12 strikeouts.
Robert Gsellman has been alternately good and bad this year, and also spent almost two months on the disabled list with a hamstring injury.
Since his return from the DL, he’s been decent: four starts, 2.91 ERA, 1.385 WHIP. He was also injured last year, a partially torn labrum, and here’s a fascinating article from last February about how the Mets hid that injury while he was batting, even as he pitched through it.
Gsellman has never faced the Cubs or anyone on the current Cubs roster.
Today’s game is on CSN Chicago.
MLB.com Gameday (classic mode) (Note: Going forward, I am going to link to the “classic” Gameday here because MLB.com broke the links I used to use to get to their “new” Gameday. If you click on this link, you can then click on “New Gameday” at the bottom of the page to get to the updated version. Note that the “classic” Gameday won’t load until just before game time.)
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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.