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Chicago Cubs vs. Chicago White Sox preview, Friday 8/21, 7:15 CT

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A Crosstown Classic without fans!

Photo by Nuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images

Friday notes...

  • WELCOME A.L. FRIENDS: The Cubs are 5-1 against AL teams so far this year, and will play their next six against AL Central opponents in the White Sox and Tigers. Since the start of 2016, the Cubs are 57-29 (.663) in interleague play, the best mark in the NL and second in the majors behind the Red Sox (59-27/.686).
  • CUBS/SOX FRIENDS: Overall in MLB history, there have been 191 players to appear in at least one game for both the Cubs and White Sox. Each team currently has one active player who played for the other: Cubs catcher Josh Phegley played for the White Sox in 2013 and 2014 (76 games) and White Sox reliever Steve Cishek pitched in 150 games for the Cubs in 2018 and 2019. Jose Quintana, who pitched for the Sox from 2012-17, is on the injured list and the players the Cubs sent to the Sox in the trade for Q, Eloy Jimenez and Dylan Cease, never played in the major leagues for the Cubs.
  • INSERT IAN HAPP PUN HERE: Happ this season is hitting .340 (17-for-50) with a .459 OBP from the left side of the plate and has a .261 average (6-for-23) with a .393 OBP from the right side. Ian is batting .340 (18-for-53) with a 1.246 OPS at Wrigley Field this year.
  • ROAD WARRIORS: Following this weekend series vs. the White Sox, the Cubs will have 20 road games and 13 home games remaining.

Here are today’s particulars.

Cubs lineup:

White Sox lineup:

Jon Lester, LHP vs. Dallas Keuchel, LHP

Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports
Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Jon Lester had kind of a rough outing against the Brewers Sunday, but he didn’t walk anyone and has issued only four walks in 23 innings so far this year.

Last year against the White Sox he threw 11 innings and allowed four earned runs, with four walks and nine strikeouts. Sounds very Jon-like, and current White Sox players are hitting .250 against him (34-for-136). Keep the walks down again and this could be a successful evening for Jon.

It’s a very small sample size, but Jon’s ERA this year in night games (0.82) is much better than in day games (4.50), two starts in each. All three of the home runs he’s allowed this year have come in day games when visibility is presumably better.

Dallas Keuchel’s second start in an Atlanta uniform last year came June 26 at Wrigley Field. He allowed three runs in 5⅔ innings. Willson Contreras and Kris Bryant homered off him.

In three career starts vs. the Cubs Keuchel has a 4.02 ERA and 1.851 WHIP. Overall for the White Sox this year he’s been pretty much as advertised in three starts, though with a low K rate (just 4.6 per nine innings).

Today’s game is on Marquee Sports Network. Here is a list of providers currently carrying Marquee. It’s also on NBC Sports Chicago with the Sox announcers Jason Benetti and Steve Stone.

ESPN has also picked up this game for a full national broadcast, no blackouts. Announcers: Jon Sciambi and Chipper Jones.

Here is the complete MLB.com Mediacenter for today.

MLB.com Gameday

Baseball-reference.com game preview

Please visit our SB Nation White Sox site South Side Sox. If you do go there to interact with White Sox 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. 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/Date) 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.