- The four-game sweep of the Reds follows a similar sweep the Reds had against the Cubs in Cincinnati, June 21-24. It’s the first season since 1931 in which each team swept a four-game series from the other. Also, it was the Cubs’ first four-game sweep of the Reds at Wrigley Field since 1945. (H/T: Elias)
- The shutout Sunday was the Cubs’ 15th of the season, which leads the major leagues. The Red Sox, Pirates and Indians are tied for second with 13.
- The Cubs are now 15-8 in August, and thus, with five games remaining this month have clinched their ninth straight winning calendar month dating to June 2017.
- Cubs pitchers have posted a 1.69 ERA (17 earned runs in 90⅔ innings) in the team’s last 10 games dating to the start of the last road trip, August 16 in Pittsburgh, walking 24 and striking out 65 while holding opponents to a .235 average. Cubs starters have a 1.67 ERA (11 earned runs in 59⅓ innings) while the relievers have a 1.72 ERA (six earned runs in 31⅓ innings).
- Including his RBI single and two-run homer onto Waveland Avenue Sunday, 15 of David Bote’s 24 RBI this season have come with two out. His 15 two-out RBI rank sixth on the team despite playing just 45 games with 109 at-bats.
- Daniel Murphy has joined Mark Grudzielanek (2003, six games) as the only Cubs since 1907 with a base hit and run scored in each of their first five games with the club. (H/T: Ed Hartig)
- The Cubs have homered in a season-high 11 straight games dating to August 15, belting 19 homers during this run (11 solo, seven two-run and one three-run). That’s the first such homer run in in a single season since August 16-27, 2014. The last Cubs home run streak in a single season that was longer: 12 straight games, August 5-18, 2006. (Must be something about August!)
Here are today’s particulars.
Jon Lester, LHP vs. Noah Syndergaard, RHP
After a series of rough starts which we probably should not mention anymore, Jon Lester has looked quite good over his last two outings: one earned run in 11⅔ innings with 11 strikeouts and just one walk. He has begun to get the swings-and-misses that seemed to be lacking over that rough patch.
One of Jon’s best starts of the year was against the Mets June 3 at Citi Field. He threw seven shutout innings, allowed two hits and three walks and struck out seven. Hopefully, he can duplicate that effort this evening.
Noah Syndergaard did not pitch in that Cubs/Mets series in New York, as he was on the DL with a finger injury. Not long after he came back, he went back on the DL briefly with hand, foot and mouth disease.
So, this has been a pretty weird season for him. In five August starts he’s posted a 4.50 ERA and 1.248 WHIP. He’s allowed just one home run in 32 August innings, though. He hasn’t faced the Cubs since 2016, so current Cubs are hitting a small sample size .309 (17-for-55) against him, but with no home runs.
Today’s game is on NBC Sports Chicago.
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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.