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Chicago Cubs vs. Cincinnati Reds preview, Wednesday 9/18, 7:05 CT

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They’re all important games now.

Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Notes for Wednesday:

Here are a few more things about Yu Darvish’s great game Tuesday night.

  • Darvish is the first Cub to strike out at least 13 batters in consecutive games since Mark Prior did so, September 16-21, 2003 vs. the Mets (13) and at Pittsburgh (14).
  • Yu’s 217 strikeouts this season are his most since 2013, when he had a career high 277). He leads the N.L. with 106 strikeouts since the All-Star Break.
  • Since the beginning of July, Darvish has struck out 112 batters while walking just seven. That’s good for a strikeout to walk ratio of 16.0. The next closest in the N.L. during this span is Walker Buehler, 6.1 strikeouts per walk (98 strikeouts/16 walks).
  • Lastly, Darvish is the first Cub with at least five 10-plus strikeout games in a season since Rich Harden in 2008 (five).

Non-Darvish note:

  • Kyle Schwarber has eight RBI in his last three games and 90 on the season, second on the team to Anthony Rizzo (93). Over his last 22 games since August 25, Kyle is batting .325/.386/.750 (26-for-80) with six doubles, two triples, eight homers and 23 RBI.

Here are today’s particulars.

Cubs lineup:

Reds lineup:

Jon Lester, LHP vs. Tyler Mahle, RHP

Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports
Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

No, no, you do not want to see Jon Lester’s numbers from his last two starts. Seriously. Just know they are bad. Very bad. If you insist, look here. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Jon has made two starts vs. the Reds this year, and... well, those weren’t very good either: 5.06 ERA, 1.406 WHIP.

Eugenio Suarez just pummels him: 14-for-39 (.359), five home runs. Seriously, unless the bases are loaded, I’d consider having Jon just put him on every time he comes to bat. The Cubs have done all right vs. Suarez so far in this series: He’s 2-for-6 with three walks, but no no home runs, and four strikeouts.

This one won’t be easy.

Unless...

Tyler Mahle, last eight starts: 6.98 ERA, 1.578 WHIP, nine home runs in 38⅔ innings. The last time the Cubs faced him, May 25 at Wrigley Field, they pounded him for nine hits, six runs and three home runs.

So maybe there’s hope after all.

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 Reds site Red Reporter. If you do go there to interact with Reds 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.