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Chicago Cubs vs. Kansas City Royals preview, Wednesday 8/8, 7:15 CT

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A sweep tonight? It’s possible!

Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Wednesday notes:

  • The shutout thrown by the Cubs Tuesday was their 12th of the 2018 season, tying them with the Pirates and Indians for the most in MLB this year. All of these are team shutouts, as no individual Cub has thrown a CG this year. Last year the Cubs had eight shutouts and 2016 they had 15.
  • The two wins in this series give the Cubs a 10-4 record in interleague play so far this year, and a seven-game current winning streak vs. A.L. teams (three vs. the Twins and two vs. the Tigers at Wrigley before this series). They have five games vs. A.L. teams remaining after the current series, all on the road: August 21-22 at Detroit, September 21-22-23 at the White Sox.
  • Happy birthday, Anthony Rizzo! The Cubs first baseman turns 29 today, and he could celebrate with a milestone if he has a two-hit night. Rizzo is two hits short of 1,000 for his career. Fun Cubs birthday fact:
  • Rizzo also has a 12-game on-base streak in which he’s hit .320/.370/.640 with a double and five home runs.
  • Tomorrow, on the Cubs off day, Jason Heyward will celebrate his 29th birthday — yes, he’s exactly one day younger than Rizzo.

Here are today’s particulars.

Cubs lineup:

Ben Zobrist update:

Royals lineup:

Jose Quintana, LHP vs. Heath Fillmyer, RHP

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

As a former resident of the A.L. Central, Jose Quintana has a long history facing the Royals. He did so twice last year and held them to one earned run in 14 innings, with 17 strikeouts.

That’s good! The rest of his career vs. K.C., not so much: 4.05 ERA, 1.275 WHIP in 24 starts, 12 of them at the K. The good news is that many of those Royals are not on the team anymore. The bad news is that some of those who remain have hit him pretty well. For example, Salvador Perez: .302 (19-for-66) with four doubles, a triple and two home runs.

So — will the familiarity help or hurt Q? We’ll find out soon.

Heath Fillmyer was the fifth-round pick of the Athletics in 2014, and was traded to the Royals last winter (with Jesse Hahn) for Brandon Moss and Ryan Buchter.

Fillmyer made his major-league debut June 24 and has made four relief appearances and four starts. Two of the starts were pretty good, in the other two he didn’t get out of the fifth inning, including his last outing August 3 against the Twins.

He’s walked a fair number of hitters, 15 in 30⅓ innings, so maybe the Cubs can be patient with him and pile up some baserunners. Fillmyer has obviously never faced the Cubs or anyone on the current roster.

Today’s game is on WGN.

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 Royals site Royals Review. If you do go there to interact with Royals 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.