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Chicago Cubs vs. St. Louis Cardinals Game 1 preview, Saturday 7/21, 12:05 CT

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This game will almost certainly be better than the last one.

Photo by Jon Durr/Getty Images

You’ve already read about all the weird history made in Friday’s game, and I’d rather focus here on the fact that despite the wacky loss Friday afternoon, the Cubs begin Saturday’s doubleheader still three games in first place in the N.L. Central. The Brewers lost to the Dodgers Friday night, their seventh straight loss. The Cubs still sport the best record in the National League, also three games better than the Dodgers.

Other notes:

  • The five-run fifth inning the Cubs had Thursday night was their 15th such inning this season, tops in the N.L. and third in the majors (Red Sox 17, Indians 16). For all of last season, the Cubs had 22 innings with five or more runs scored.
  • The Cubs drew seven walks Friday, increasing the season total to 374. That’s an average of 3.94 walks per game, which is a pace for 638. That would rank third in franchise history.
  • The five runs the Cubs scored Friday give them 490 for the season, which leads the National League and is an average of 5.16 runs per game. That’s a pace for 836 runs for the season. If the Cubs score 800+ runs this year, it would be the third consecutive season doing that; the Cubs franchise hasn’t done that since 1929-30-31.

Site note: Shortly after this game ends, a recap will be posted. Then a preview for Game 2, with lineups and other necessary info, will post at 5 p.m. CT, about an hour before the scheduled game time for the night game.

Here are today’s particulars.

Cubs lineup:

The Cardinals lineup was not available at posting time. Please check the BCB Twitter feed for the Cardinals lineup.

Tyler Chatwood, RHP vs. Luke Weaver, LHP

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Hey, it’s the second half! A new beginning for Tyler Chatwood! No more huge-walk games!

Well, we can hope, right?

We’d better hope, because in two starts against the Cardinals this year, Chatwood’s results have been pretty bad: 8⅔ innings, four hits (good!), 12 walks (awful!), five earned runs, 12 strikeouts.

I mean, that’s just bizarre. It’s as if you were playing a video game with him as a starter and messed with his settings.

Hoping for better results today.

Luke Weaver had a pretty good rookie year in 2017 but this year, he’s struggled at times, and in two starts against the Cubs, they have absolutely pounded him: 11.25 ERA, 2.125 WHIP in eight total innings.

He had a rough stretch in June, but his last two starts have been good, 14 total innings, three earned runs, 14 strikeouts against the Giants and White Sox.

Today’s game is on WGN. It’s also on MLB Network (outside the Chicago and St. Louis markets).

Here is the complete MLB.com Mediacenter for today.

MLB.com Gameday

Baseball-reference.com game preview

SB Nation game preview

Please visit our SB Nation Cardinals site Viva el Birdos. If you do go there to interact with Cardinals fans, please be respectful, abide by their individual site rules and serve as a good representation of Cub fans in general and BCB in particular.

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.