Despite Friday’s loss, the Cubs lost no ground to the Brewers, Pirates and Cardinals, since those teams also lost Friday. So the Cubs’ lead over Milwaukee remains 1½ games, and they lead Pittsburgh by 3½ and St. Louis by 4½.
Feel better now?
Today’s weather forecast calls for a slight chance of showers today, but it also looks like there will be the proverbial “window” to play this game. It’ll be warm with the wind blowing out at Wrigley Field.
- Kyle Schwarber has four home runs in his last 10 games and is 5-for-12 with a double, two homers, five runs, three RBI and two walks in his last three games (.417/.500/1.000, 1.500 OPS).
- Kris Bryant is 7-for-13 with two doubles, one homer, five runs scored, two RBI and two walks in his last four games (.538/.600/.923, 1.523 OPS).
- Anthony Rizzo has homered in three straight games for the second time this season (also, April 30-May 3). He leads the team with 14 homers and 38 RBI and has hit safely in six straight games (12-for-25, .480/.536/1.040, 1.576 OPS).
- The Cubs lead the National League with 36 home runs this month and are third overall in the N.L. with 77 homers. There are six games remaining in May.
Here are today’s particulars.
Yu Darvish, RHP vs. Tyler Mahle, RHP
Yu Darvish, last three starts: 3.52 ERA, 1.239 WHIP, 25 strikeouts in 15⅓ innings. That’s... actually pretty good, and that includes a six-walk start against the Marlins.
Another of those three starts was against the Reds, 10 days ago in Cincinnati. He struck out 11 and issued no walks in 5⅓ innings. There are signs over the last two or three outings that Darvish has figured something out and could be ready for a breakout. Hopefully it starts today.
Tyler Mahle is having a solid season (3.51 ERA in nine starts, 2.31 ERA in four starts in May) and has an excellent walk rate, 1.9 per nine innings. Thus the Cubs’ game plan today should be to put the ball in play rather than try to wait Mahle out for walks.
He faced the Cubs twice last year. April 2, 2018 in Cincinnati, they got just one hit in six innings off him that day, but hit him better May 20, 2018 at Wrigley: four runs in six innings, including home runs by Javier Baez and Kyle Schwarber.
Today’s game is on ABC7 Chicago. It’s also on MLB Network (outside the Cubs and Reds market territories).
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.