Hey, guess what? Since Cubs baseball-wise we’re exactly where we were 24 hours ago, you get to read my Game 2 preview again!
The good news is that weather is not going to interrupt this game:
Mostly sunny, with a high near 53. North northwest wind 5 to 10 mph, with gusts as high as 15 mph.
SITE NOTE: There will be the usual recap of this game after it ends. Then, a game thread for Cardinals/Padres Game 3 will post at 6 p.m. CT, a few minutes before that game’s first pitch at 6:08 CT.
Game 2 notes:
- HERE, MAYBE THIS WILL MAKE YOU FEEL BETTER: The Twins, eliminated Wednesday, have now lost 18 straight postseason games. The Cubs have won 19 postseason games since the Twins last won one. Hopefully, that becomes 20 this afternoon.
- ELIMINATION GAME HISTORY: The Cubs have an 11-17 all-time record in postseason elimination games, including Wild Card games in 2015 (a win at Pittsburgh) and 2018 (a loss at home vs. Colorado). In games in which only the Cubs are facing elimination, the team is 7-13. However! The Cubs are looking in this series to win consecutive elimination games for just the second time in franchise history. As you likely recall, the first time took place in the 2016 World Series when the Cubs wiped out a three-games-to-one deficit to defeat Cleveland. (H/T: Ed Hartig)
- ABOUT YU: Yu Darvish walked just 14 on the season, striking out 93, good for an average of 11.01 strikeouts per nine innings ... he limited opponents to a .253 on-base percentage and .575 OPS, both fourth-best among N.L. hurlers. More on Darvish below.
- HAPP-ENSTANCE: In Game 1, Ian Happ became just the second switch-hitter in franchise history to homer in a postseason game, joining Dexter Fowler, who hit five homers spanning the 2015-16 postseasons.
Here are today’s particulars.
Yu Darvish, RHP vs. Sixto Sanchez, RHP
The postseason game Darvish threw before that, though, was in Wrigley Field, Game 3 of the 2017 NLCS, in which Darvish utterly baffled Cubs hitters. He threw 6⅓ innings and allowed six hits and one run, striking out seven. That’s the Darvish we have come to know from the second half of 2019 through now.
Darvish’s first Cubs start was against the Marlins, March 31, 2018, and it did not go well. But as we know now, Darvish was likely injured even then, and most of the Marlins from that game aren’t on the team anymore.
Current members of the Marlins are 13-for-61 (.213) against Darvish with 16 strikeouts.
Sixto Sanchez is another in the Marlins’ group of hard-throwing young righthanders. Just 21, he was acquired by the Marlins last year in the J.T. Realmuto trade. A native of the Dominican Republic, Sanchez has made seven major-league starts, all this year, most with pretty good results, although the last two weren’t (seven total innings, 11.57 ERA, 2.571 WHIP, .375 opponents BA).
He has obviously never faced the Cubs or anyone on the Cubs roster. Per Fangraphs he relies mostly on his fastball (averaging over 97 miles per hour!) and an 89 mile per hour changeup. This will not be easy today.
Today’s game is on ABC-7 Chicago (and other ABC affiliates nationwide). Announcers: Jon Sciambi, Chipper Jones and Jesse Rogers.
Please visit our SB Nation Marlins site Fish Stripes. If you do go there to interact with Marlins 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 2020 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, titled “Cubs vs. (Team) (Day of week/date) game threads.” It will contain every thread related to that particular game, including the First Pitch Thread and all the overflow threads, as well as the recap when it’s published. The recap will also live on the front page as a separate post.
You will also be able to find the preview, First Pitch Thread and all the overflow threads in the box marked “Chicago Cubs Game Threads” at the bottom of the front page (you can also find them in this section link). The StoryStream for each game can also be found in that section.
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.