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Chicago Cubs vs. Cincinnati Reds preview, Saturday 5/1, 3:10 CT

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The Cubs look to even up their series against the Reds.

David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

Today’s roster move: Here

Saturday notes:

  • PASSING GRACE: Kris Bryant hit his 149th career homer yesterday, surpassing Mark Grace for 15th-most in Cubs history. Including his grand slam Monday, Bryant enters today among NL leaders in extra-base hits (1st, 16), doubles (tied for 1st, 9), total bases (tied for 2nd, 58), OPS (3rd, 1.078), slugging (3rd, .667), home runs (tied for 4th, 7), BA (6th, .322) and OBP (7th, .412),
  • PIECES OF APRIL: The Cubs finished April with an 11-15 record, their worst first month of the season since 2014 (9-17). Cub hitters batted .216 (180-for-833) in April, sixth-worst in the majors. However, the Cubs hit 32 homers during the first month of the season, tied for fifth-most in the National League.
  • STEELE WORK: Justin Steele struck out five Reds in his two innings of work yesterday, becoming the first Cub reliever to strike out five-plus in an outing this season. Steele has record nine strikeouts in 5⅓ innings (15.2 strikeouts per nine innings rate) this season.
  • NO REST TILL THURSDAY: This afternoon is the 12th game (record in the 11 so far is 5-6) of a stretch that began on April 20 in which the Cubs play 16 consecutive days through next Wednesday, May 5.

Here are today’s particulars.

Cubs lineup:

If you’re wondering about Willson Contreras:

Reds lineup:

Zach Davies, RHP vs. Luis Castillo, RHP

USA TODAY Sports
Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Zach Davies. Don’t really know what to say anymore. Since his first start he’s just been awful.

You don’t want to know how he did against the Reds in 2019, the last time he faced them. Trust me on that.

Here’s one positive thing about Davies: In four career starts at GABP, Davies has a 2.38 ERA and 1.147 WHIP and only one HR allowed in 22⅔ innings.

It’s gotta get better.

Hey, look! A Cubs opponent pitcher who’s having nearly as bad a year as the Cubs starter!

Luis Castillo has made five starts this year. Only one of them can be characterized as “good.” The rest range from mediocre to awful.

The last time he faced the Cubs was August 30, 2020 at GABP. The Cubs scored four runs off him in five innings, including home runs by Ian Happ and Jason Heyward. Happ (6-for-13) and Heyward (6-for-20, two HR) have hit Castillo well.

That’s all I’ve got.

Today’s game is on Marquee Sports Network. Here’s 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 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 2021 Game Thread procedure will be a bit different than previous years. It will be similar to what we’ve used for Spring Training.

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 post related to that particular game, including the First Pitch Thread and the overflow thread, 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 the overflow thread 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 90 minutes after the scheduled game time.

Discuss amongst yourselves.