- Saturday night’s win marked Joe Maddon’s 400th Cubs managerial victory, and he reached that milestone in his 674th regular season game with the Cubs. Only Frank Chance (594 games) and Cap Anson (606) reached 400 wins in fewer contests than Joe. Maddon is the fastest manager to reach 400 wins with a team since Joe Torre with the Yankees from 1996-99. (H/T for the latter factoid: STATS Inc.)
- Jose Quintana today looks to become the first Cubs starter to record four straight starts of seven or more innings and two or fewer runs allowed since Jon Lester did it September 2-20, 2016. More on Quintana below.
- In his last nine games since April 17, Kris Bryant has posted a .421 OBP and a .921 OPS with seven walks and five strikeouts.
- Cubs hitters rank fourth in the N.L., averaging one walk every 9.12 plate appearances (Dodgers are first at 8.71), and they are third in the N.L. striking out once every 4.52 plate appearances (Dodgers are first at 4.74).
- Jason Heyward is third in the N.L. with a .456 on-base percentage and Willson Contreras’ .425 OBP ranks seventh. The Cubs have three players in the top 10 of NL OPS: Javier Baez (fifth, 1.046), Contreras (sixth, 1.040) and Heyward (10th, 1.013).
Here are today’s particulars.
Jose Quintana, LHP vs. Luke Weaver, RHP
Jose Quintana, last three starts: 21 innings, 0.86 ERA, 0.810 WHIP, 25 strikeouts in 21 innings. If he can keep this up, he’ll finally be the guy the Cubs thought they were getting in July 2017 from the White Sox.
The D-backs, though, will be a tougher team to face. They are significantly better vs. LHP (.300/.344/.509) than RHP (.255/.325/.452), which was one reason the rotation was switched around last weekend to have Tyler Chatwood face them instead of Quintana, who threw against the Dodgers, who aren’t as good against lefties.
This is reflected in current D-backs performances vs. Q: .312 (24-for-77), three home runs. Adam Jones hits him particularly well: 9-for-17 (.529), three doubles, two home runs.
Luke Weaver, who came to the D-backs in the Paul Goldschmidt trade, is off to a pretty good start this season, especially his last three starts: 1.53 ERA, 0.962 WHIP, 24 strikeouts in 17⅔ innings.
However! Weaver is a guy who the Cubs have hit quite well in his career. In six starts: 9.00 ERA, 2.120 WHIP, five home runs in 25 innings. Current Cubs are hitting .425 (37-for-87) against Weaver with three doubles, two triples and four home runs. That includes the following: Ben Zobrist, 8-for-12, Anthony Rizzo, 7-for-11 and Javier Baez, 8-for-14 with two home runs.
This one ought to be fun.
Today’s game is on WGN.
SB Nation game preview
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The 2019 Game Thread procedure will be the same as the one used in previous years. 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.