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Chicago Cubs vs. Washington Nationals preview, Wednesday 5/19, 6:40 CT

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The Cubs go for their fourth straight win.

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Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Today’s roster move: Here

Wednesday notes...

  • HITTING MACHINES: Including 13 hits last night, the Cubs have recorded 10 or more hits in four-straight games. The last time they did so in five consecutive games was August 4-8, 2019 against the Brewers, Athletics and Reds.
  • SOLID RELIEF: The Cubs bullpen has thrown nine scoreless innings in the team’s last three games and has not allowed an earned run in eight of the last nine games since May 8, posting a 1.29 ERA (five earned runs in 35 innings) with a .429 opponent OPS in that stretch.
  • HEY, NANCE! At 30 years, 59 days of age on Monday, Tommy Nance was the oldest Cubs pitcher to make his major league debut since Tsuyoshi Wada, who was 33 years, 137 days of age when he made his MLB debut with the team on July 8, 2014.
  • A NICE LITTLE STREAK: The Cubs are 11-6 in their last 17 games dating to April 29 in Atlanta. In the 17 games the Cubs have outscored their opponents 91-68 (+23) to bring the club to a plus-five run differential for the 2021 season (190-185).

Here are today’s particulars.

Cubs lineup:

The Nationals lineup was not available at posting time. Please check the BCB Twitter feed for the Nationals lineup.

Jake Arrieta, RHP vs. Max Scherzer, RHP

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USA TODAY NETWORK

Jake Arrieta had a good outing in his last start against the Tigers after missing some time with a thumb abrasion. Apart from the one start vs. the Reds in which Jake was affected by that thumb issue, he has a 2.65 ERA and 1.118 WHIP and just three home runs allowed in 34 innings.

Jake’s last start vs. the Nationals was August 25, 2020 and he threw pretty well, three hits and one run allowed in five innings. Current Nats are hitting .213 (38-for-178) against him with 48 strikeouts. Juan Soto, Josh Bell and Trea Turner have all homered twice off Jake.

He’ll need to be on his “A” game tonight, because Max Scherzer is off to a very good start for the Nats this season. At age 36, he’s had a couple of clunkers this year, but this month he’s been almost lights-out: three starts, 0.84 ERA, 0.516 WHIP, 30 strikeouts in 21⅓ innings.

The last time he faced the Cubs at Wrigley Field was the famous David Bote walkoff slam game, in which Scherzer threw seven shutout innings with 11 strikeouts. Current Cubs are hitting .216 (25-for-116) against Scherzer.

Both of these pitchers are aging — Arrieta is 35, Scherzer 36 — but both seem to have a lot left in the tank. Should be a fun matchup.

Today’s game is on Marquee Sports Network. Here’s a list of providers currently carrying Marquee. The game is also on MLB Network (outside the Cubs and Nationals market territories).

Here is the complete MLB.com Mediacenter for today.

MLB.com Gameday

Baseball-reference.com game preview

Please visit our SB Nation Nationals site Federal Baseball. If you do go there to interact with Nationals 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.