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Chicago Cubs vs. Pittsburgh Pirates preview, Saturday 6/9, 1:20 CT

The Cubs are looking for their fourth win in a row.

Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

Once again, you will need this today:

There’s supposed to be enough of a window to get this game in, though.


  • Over his last nine games, Jason Heyward is hitting .400/.415/550 (16-for-40) with three doubles, a home run, six RBI and only three strikeouts.
  • Walk watch: The Cubs have 236 walks so far this year. That leads the National League (despite the Cubs having played the fewest games of anyone in the league). It’s 3.93 walks per game, a pace for 637.
  • Run-scoring watch: The Cubs have scored 308 runs, second in the league to the Braves (315) despite playing three fewer games. That’s a pace for 831 runs, which would give the Cubs 800+ runs in three consecutive seasons. The last time any Cub teams accomplished that was 1929-30-31.
  • Jon Lester’s outing last Sunday was his 42nd since 2015 in which he threw at least six innings and allowed one or no runs. Those 42 such outings are third most in the majors in that span, trailing only Max Scherzer (44) and Jake Arrieta (44). More on Lester below.

Here are today’s particulars.

Cubs lineup:

Pirates lineup:

Jon Lester, LHP vs. Nick Kingham, RHP

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
Butch Dill-USA TODAY Sports

Today we have another pitching rematch, this one from the game May 29 in Pittsburgh. In it, Jon Lester got roughed up early, including a pair of home runs (Elias Diaz, Austin Meadows) but recovered to throw six decent innings. Nick Kingham gave the Cubs three runs in 5⅔ innings, including a home run by Ben Zobrist. The Cubs won the game 8-6.

Since then, Lester had an outstanding outing against the Mets June 3 in New York (seven shutout innings, two hits allowed). He’s on target to have a year as good as his 2016 season.

On the same day, Kingham gave up four runs in five innings to the Cardinals. After throwing seven one-hit innings in his MLB debut April 29, Kingham has a 5.32 ERA and 1.273 WHIP in four starts covering 22 innings. Sounds like a guy the Cubs should be able to hit.

Today’s game is on ABC7 Chicago.

Here is the complete Mediacenter for today. Gameday game preview

SB Nation game preview

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The 2018 Game Thread procedure will be the same as the one used during 2017. 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.

Discuss amongst yourselves.