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Chicago Cubs vs. Washington Nationals preview, Saturday 8/24, 1:20 CT

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The Cubs look to even up the series against the Nats.

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Kris Bryant’s Players Weekend shoes
Photo by Nuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images

Saturday notes:

  • The Cubs begin today’s action half a game behind the Cardinals in the N.L. Central, as St. Louis won their game Friday evening. The Cardinals host the Rockies again Saturday night, so this Cubs/Nationals game will be over by the time that one begins.
  • The nine runs scored by the Nats Friday give them 90 runs over their last nine games, an average of 10 runs per game. What’s most remarkable about that is that they won only seven of the nine, including a game in which they scored 14 runs and lost.
  • Nicholas Castellanos, who provided two-thirds of the Cubs hits Friday (2-for-4, a single and a double) is batting .524 (11-for-21) over his last five games. He has 11 multi-hit games in 21 contests since becoming a Cub, and his 45 doubles this season are one short of his career-high set last season.
  • The Cubs have 34 games remaining this season, evenly split: 17 on the road and 17 at home. 23 of the 34 games are against N.L. Central division opponents, and among those, seven remain against the Brewers (three at home, four on the road) and seven against the Cardinals (four at home, three on the road).
  • SITE NOTE: Today’s game recap will be delayed as I am invited to a postgame BBQ. It will be posted by early evening.

Here are today’s particulars.

Cubs lineup:

Nationals lineup:

Jose Quintana, LHP vs. Joe Ross, RHP

Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports
Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

After having a rough time for most of the three previous months, Jose Quintana is having a great August: four starts, 1.38 ERA, 0.769 WHIP, 33 strikeouts in 26 innings.

Let’s hope he’s finally “figured it out” and can keep this run going for the rest of the season.

Interestingly, this is his first-ever game against the Nationals. He has faced quite a few of their players from his time in the American League, though, and overall current Nats are hitting .227 (34-for-150) against him with 43 strikeouts.

Keep up the good work, Q.

Joe Ross, as noted in the series preview, was hit in the leg by a 110 mile per hour comebacker in his last start. He’s been deemed good to go this afternoon.

Ross has not had a good year. He started it in Washington’s bullpen, was bad, got demoted to Triple-A Fresno, and has made five starts and two relief appearances since his return. Those have been somewhat better: 3.90 ERA, 1.485 WHIP.

Ross made a relief appearance vs. the Cubs May 17 in Washington. He faced three batters, allowed a hit, a hit by pitch and recorded one out. His last start vs. the Cubs was September 13, 2018 at Nationals Park. He threw five innings and allowed two runs, with no strikeouts. Current Cubs are a small sample size .306 (15-for-49) against Ross. Anthony Rizzo is 5-for-11.

Today’s game is on NBC Sports Chicago. If you have “cut the cord,” NBC Sports Chicago games can be streamed in the Cubs’ market territory via Fubo. Sign up for Fubo here. It’s also on MLB Network (outside the Cubs and Nationals market territories).

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 Nationals site Federal Baseball. If you do go there to interact with Nationals 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.