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Chicago Cubs vs. Pittsburgh Pirates preview, Wednesday 7/3, 6:05 CT

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The Cubs have lost three in a row and it would be nice if that streak ended tonight.

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The big news is the call-up of Robel Garcia, which you can read about here.

Hey, look! The Cubs made some history Tuesday night!

Okay, so it’s not the history they would have liked to make. But history nevertheless!

Notes:

  • Despite numerous rain delays this year including the 2:05 delay Tuesday evening, the Cubs have had only one postponed game this season, the April 14 snowout vs. the Angels that was made up June 3. As of one year ago, July 3, 2018, the Cubs already had seven postponed games. They had nine overall in 2018, the most since 1989.
  • After dropping the first two games of this series in Pittsburgh, the Cubs will remain winless in their last seven series since a three-game sweep of the Cardinals at Wrigley Field June 7-9. They also entered this series having dropped their last five road series starting with their visit to Houston near the end of May.

Here are today’s particulars.

Cubs lineup:

Pirates lineup:

Yu Darvish, RHP vs. Chris Archer, RHP

Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Well, here’s an interesting matchup between two pitchers a couple years apart in age who have both had success in the past, but are struggling this year.

Yu Darvish is such a tease. He’ll have one really good outing and then follow it up with two that aren’t horrid, but the numbers are pretty bad. Last two starts: 7.36 ERA, 1.182 WHIP. Now, those two numbers usually don’t go together — a decent WHIP but bad ERA. This means Darvish is being victimized by one or two bad pitches, or runs allowed by relievers after he leaves the game. I keep thinking he’s going to break out and have a really good game like the one he had at Dodger Stadium last month.

He faced the Pirates April 10 at Wrigley Field and allowed five runs (four earned) in 5⅓ innings. No walks that day, though.

One note: Darvish’s numbers are significantly better in night games (4.34 ERA, 1.197 WHIP in 12 starts) than day games (6.58 ERA, 1.769 WHIP in five starts). For whatever that’s worth.

Chris Archer’s season ERA has not been under 5 since April, and maybe that’s all you need to know about his season. He’s had a couple of decent starts in that span, but has thrown more than five innings just three times in nine starts since the beginning of May.

He has not faced the Cubs this year, but last September 25 at Wrigley Field he threw six shutout innings against them. No current Cub has more than nine career at-bats against Archer, but Javier Baez has made the most of those nine: five hits, including a double.

Archer has been much better this year at PNC Park (3.89 ERA, 1.364 WHIP eight starts) than on the road (7.89 ERA, 1.618 ERA, six starts). On the other hand, he’s been far worse in night games (7.62 ERA, 1.500 WHIP, five starts) than in day games (4.34 ERA, 1.448 WHIP, nine starts).

So, ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Today’s game is on NBC Sports Chicago.

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 Pirates site Bucs Dugout. If you do go there to interact with Pirates 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 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.