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Chicago Cubs vs. San Diego Padres preview, Friday 8/3, 1:20 CT

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The Cubs look to do better than they did Thursday night.

Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

Notes for Friday:

  • Ben Zobrist enters today’s game with a team-best .310 average (88-for-284). he is batting .486 (17-for-35) with five walks and a .537 OBP in 11 games since the All-Star break. The .486 post-break average is tops in the N.L. among batters with at least 30 plate appearances.
  • Jose Quintana’s start today makes four consecutive games in which the Cubs have started a lefthander. That’s the first time that’s happened in franchise history since September 21-23, 1966 at Wrigley Field vs. the Reds (Ken Holtzman, Dave Dowling) and Dodgers (Curt Simmons, Dick Ellsworth). (H/T: Ed Hartig, and note, the 9/23/66 date was a doubleheader.) Three of those names should be familiar to you. Dowling, at one time a good prospect, appeared in just two MLB games. That was his only start. He threw a complete-game victory, but never pitched in the major leagues again. He was traded to the Cardinals in 1968 and was out of baseball after that year, it appears due to injury.
  • The Dodgers’ 16-run margin of victory over the Brewers Thursday night gave them the N.L. lead in run differential at +109. The Cubs, despite Thursday’s five-run loss, still rank second at +100 and are still underperforming their Pythagorean projection, which would have them at 64-44.
  • Despite those numbers Thursday for the Cubs and Dodgers, the Cubs still lead the N.L. in runs, runs per game, BA, OBP and OPS.

Here are today’s particulars.

Cubs lineup:

Padres lineup:

Jose Quintana, LHP vs. Tyson Ross, RHP

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

Jose Quintana is just maddening. He followed up three pretty good starts with a stinker his last time out. So which is the real Q?

He has not faced the Padres this year. He did last year — as a member of the White Sox, May 14, 2017, in the Ballpark Formerly Known as the Cell.

That was a pretty good outing: seven innings, five hits, four walks, three runs. I’m pretty sure we’d take that from him this afternoon.

Hello, Tyson Ross, the guy so many Cubs fans wanted to sign last year when he wasn’t even going to be able to pitch till midseason.

Ross pitched for the Padres from 2013-16, had a couple of pretty good years, then they let him go after neck and shoulder injuries ruined his 2016 season. He made 12 appearances (10 starts) with the Rangers last year, they let him go, and now he’s a Padre again.

It’s worked out pretty well, though he had an awful July (8.87 ERA, 1.843 WHIP, five home runs in 23⅓ innings).

He has not faced the Cubs since 2015, and so current Cubs are a small sample size 9-for-28 (.321) against him.

Today’s game is on NBC Sports Chicago. It’s also on MLB Network (outside the Chicago and San Diego 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 Padres site Gaslamp Ball. If you do go there to interact with Padres 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.