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Chicago Cubs vs. St. Louis Cardinals preview, Saturday 6/12, 6:15 CT

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The Cubs go for the series win against their rivals from St. Louis.

Photo by Nuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images

Today's roster move: Here

Saturday notes...

  • GOOD AGAINST EVERYONE: The Cubs are 17-14 against the NL Central, 8-6 against the NL East and 9-4 against the NL West. The Cubs and Giants are the only NL clubs with winning records against all three NL divisions.
  • HANGING WITH THE BEST: The Cubs are 26-13 (.667) since April 29, the best record in the NL in that span and the second-best record in the majors behind the Rays (26-12/.692).
  • LONG BALL NOTES: The Cubs have homered in 11 straight games since May 31, hitting 23 long balls in that span, and their 85 home runs this season rank fourth-highest in the NL, behind the Giants (91), Braves (90) and Reds (88).
  • THE PROFESSOR: After allowing seven walks in his first three starts (13 innings), Kyle Hendricks has walked just seven batters in his last nine starts spanning 55⅔ innings since April 23. Over those nine starts he’s struck out 44. More on Kyle below.

Here are today’s particulars.

Cubs lineup:

Cardinals lineup:

Kyle Hendricks, RHP vs. John Gant, RHP

USA TODAY Sports
USA TODAY NETWORK

Kyle Hendricks seems back on track. Last seven starts: 3.13 ERA, 1.217 WHIP, only six walks in 46 innings. Still too many homers allowed — seven in that span — but otherwise he seems back to being The Professor.

One of those seven starts was a solid 6⅔-inning outing May 21 in St. Louis where he held the Cardinals to seven hits and one run, kept the game close until the Cubs blew it open in the eighth. In addition, the Cardinals are a team Hendricks has done well against his entire career. In 21 career starts against them he’s posted a 2.81 ERA and 1.069 WHIP. Current Cardinals are hitting .229 (52-for-227) against him.

Just keep up the good work, Kyle.

John Gant has faced the Cubs 13 times in his career — but since 2018, all of those were relief appearances, including three last year.

This year in the Cardinals rotation, he had a seven-start stretch of 0.98 ERA and 1.391 WHIP — and then he got torched for seven runs in four innings by the Reds in his last outing.

So his overall numbers look pretty good, but walks have been his downfall. He’s walked 37 this year, 6.1 per nine innings. The 37 walks in 54⅔ innings leads the major leagues. Thus I would recommend that the Cubs be patient hitters tonight.

Anthony Rizzo has hit him well in a small sample size: 5-for-9, a double, a home run.

Today’s game is on Fox-TV (regional — coverage map). A reminder that if you subscribe to MLB.TV or MLB Extra Innings, you should be able to watch via those services if the game is not on the Fox-TV affiliate in your market. Fox announcers: Joe Buck, John Smoltz and Ken Rosenthal.

Here is the complete MLB.com Mediacenter for today.

MLB.com Gameday

Baseball-reference.com game preview

Please visit our SB Nation Cardinals site Viva el Birdos. If you do go there to interact with Cardinals 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.