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Chicago Cubs vs. San Diego Padres preview, Monday 5/31, 1:20 CT

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This series will likely tell us a lot about the 2021 Cubs.

Matt Marton-USA TODAY Sports

Today's roster move: Here

Monday notes...

  • WHAT A RELIEF! In May, Cubs relievers have a 1.56 ERA (17 earned runs in 98 innings), a WHIP of 1.010 and 124 strikeouts. They have held opponents to a .178/.272/.244 slash line and have allowed just four home runs.
  • GETTING ON BASE: The Cubs’ .322 team OBP now ranks tied for third in the NL with the Reds, behind only the Padres (.326) and Dodgers (.337).
  • SCORING RUNS: The Cubs’ run differential of +27 ranks third in the NL, behind the Padres (+86), Dodgers (+68) and Giants (+64).
  • HOT HITTING: Ian Happ in May: .295/.394/.607 (18-for-61) with four doubles, five home runs and 11 runs.

Here are today’s particulars.

Cubs lineup:

Padres lineup:

Kohl Stewart, RHP vs. Chris Paddack, RHP

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USA TODAY NETWORK

Kohl Stewart was very highly regarded out of high school. He was the first-round pick of the Twins (fourth overall) in 2013 — two picks after the Cubs chose Kris Bryant.

Stewart didn’t make it to the big leagues until 2018. He made 17 appearances (six starts) for the Twins that year and 2019 with little success (4.79 ERA, 1.435 WHIP). The Cubs signed him as a free agent in January.

He’s made four starts at Triple-A Iowa this year with a 3.68 ERA and 0.955 WHIP and 23 strikeouts in 22 innings.

He’s never faced the Padres or anyone on their active roster. Perhaps this will be to his advantage.

Chris Paddack is having a solid year for San Diego, with a 3.61 ERA and 1.134 WHIP in nine starts. He’s been especially good this month: 1.42 ERA, 0.842 WHIP in four starts.

He has one career start vs. the Cubs, September 11, 2019 in San Diego. He threw six shutout innings and struck out seven. Go look at that boxscore link, though — it’s shocking how many guys who played for the Cubs in that game are no longer on the team.

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 Padres site Gaslamp Ball. If you do go there to interact with Padres 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.