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Chicago Cubs vs. Milwaukee Brewers preview, Friday 9/11, 7:10 CT

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This is an important series for both teams.

Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

Today’s roster move: Here

Friday notes:

  • WHO NEEDS THE LONG BALL?: Thursday’s game was the first where the Cubs had scored eight or more runs without a home run since June 30, 2018 (14 runs vs. the Twins).
  • WILLSON!: Willson Contreras has been hot since the calendar turned to September. This month: .457/.537/.629 (16-for-35) with three doubles, a home run and 10 runs. His four-hit night Thursday tied a career high.
  • SO RELIEVED: The Cubs bullpen has posted a 2.03 ERA (12 earned runs in 53⅓ innings) in the team’s last 15 games dating to August 28, holding opponents to a .177 average (33-for-186) and a .544 OPS. In this stretch, Cubs relievers have walked 23 and struck out 65.
  • ROAD WARRIORS: Cubs hitters have a .213/.319/.374 (180-for-844) slash line at home and a .252/.336/.457 (148-for-587) slash line on the road. They’ve homered 30 times in 17 road games, 29 times in 28 home games. Ten of the 15 remaining games are away from Wrigley Field.

Here are today’s particulars.

Cubs lineup:

About Javy:

Brewers lineup:

Jon Lester, LHP vs. Brandon Woodruff, RHP

Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports
Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

Jon Lester, first three starts, 2020: 17 innings, 1.06 ERA, 0.647 WHIP, 1 HR .117 opponents BA
Jon Lester, last five starts, 2020: 23⅓ innings, 9.26 ERA, 1.971 WHIP, 8 HR, .367 opponents BA

Yikes. That’s a Cy Young candidate transformed into a DFA candidate over the span of a few weeks. What happened?

I don’t know, but Jon’s got to fix it, and soon. In his only start vs. the Brewers this year, August 16 at Wrigley Field, he allowed five runs (two homers) in six innings. That’s not horrible, but it’s not that good either.

Let’s hope he’s figured out what’s wrong. The Cubs need him to finish the year strong.

Brandon Woodruff has faced the Cubs twice this year and has allowed eight hits and five runs in 9⅓ innings.

Since his last outing vs. the Cubs he’s made four starts with a 4.87 ERA and 1.426 WHIP over 20⅓ innings. That’s not as bad as Lester’s recent starts, but it suggests the Cubs might be able to hit him tonight.

Small sample size, but Woodruff’s been slightly worse at home this yaer (4.29 ERA, four starts) than on the road (3.60 ERA, five starts).

Today’s game is on Marquee Sports Network. Here is a list of providers currently carrying Marquee.

Here is the complete MLB.com Mediacenter for today.

MLB.com Gameday

Baseball-reference.com game preview

Please visit our SB Nation Brewers site Brew Crew Ball. If you do go there to interact with Brewers 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.