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Cubs vs. White Sox at Mesa and Glendale split squad preview, Thursday 3/17, 3:05 CT

The Cubs open the revised spring schedule with a pair against the White Sox.

Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Well, here we are, in a place I didn’t expect baseball to be. Just a bit more than a week ago, there seemed a chance labor negotiations would break down and we might have been at risk of losing the entire season.

But players and owners made what appears to be a reasonable deal, and after a very quick — 21 games — Spring Training, we’ll have a full 162-game season.

Today, a few weeks later than originally scheduled, there will be baseball players playing baseball on the field for the Chicago Cubs. This is cause for celebration. Enjoy!

Please note: Both of these games will go seven innings.

Here are today’s particulars.

At Mesa:

Cubs lineup:

Vargas 2B, Gomes C, B. Davis CF, Young 1B, Crow-Armstrong LF, Strumpf 3B, Dewees RF, Machado SS, Giambrone DH

White Sox lineup:

Mercedes DH, Collins C, Adolfo LF, Rutherford RF, Mendick SS, Mieses 1B, Sanchez 2B, Colas CF, Ramos 3B

At Glendale:

Cubs lineup:

Z. Davis CF, Higgins C, Weber 2B, Maldonado DH, Ball 1B, Jordan 3B, Hill RF, Made SS, Artis LF

White Sox lineup:

Rodriguez DH, Vaughn RF, Sheets 1B, Burger 3B, Smith LF, Gonzalez SS, Remillard 2B, Zavala C, Cespedes CF

As you can see, it’s almost all minor leaguers playing for the Cubs this afternoon. It’s a good opportunity to see top prospects Brennen Davis and Pete Crow-Armstrong playing in front of the home folks in Mesa. Meanwhile, the White Sox have a handful of MLB players in both lineups.

Kyle Hendricks will start for the Cubs this afternoon in Mesa. Other Cubs pitchers for this game include Cory Abbott, Scott Effross, Danny Palencia and last year’s No. 1 pick, Jordan Wicks.

Kyle Kubat will start for the White Sox in Mesa.

Ben Holmes will start for the Cubs this afternoon in Glendale. Holmes is 30, pitched a couple of games for Triple-A Iowa and is likely a candidate for Iowa again this year. Other Cubs pitchers for this game: these guys

Wes Benjamin will start for the White Sox in Glendale. Benjamin has pitched in 21 MLB games for the Rangers in 2020 and 2021.

Today’s game in Mesa is on Marquee Sports Network. Here’s a list of providers currently carrying Marquee. This game is also being carried by MLB Network outside the Cubs/White Sox market territory.

Today’s game in Glendale is being carried by NBC Sports Chicago with the Sox announcers. It will also be broadcast on a delayed basis on MLB Network at 8 p.m. CT.

MLB.com Gameday for Mesa game

MLB.com Gameday for Glendale game

Please note that during spring training, Gameday doesn’t usually go pitch-by-pitch as it does during the regular season — usually, it will update after each at-bat.

Here is the complete MLB.com Mediacenter for today. (Please note: As of posting time this link did not work. I’m assuming MLB is still working out some bugs and trying to get everything organized. After all, they’ve had one week to do what they usually do in three months’ time.)

Please visit our SB Nation White Sox site South Side Sox. If you do go there to interact with Sox 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.

As we have done in the past, we’ll have a first-pitch thread at five minutes to game time and one overflow thread, 90 minutes after game time. For today, that will be 3 p.m. CT and 4:30 p.m. CT. There will be only one set of threads for both games today since they start at the same time.

These threads will not post individually onto the front page; instead, you can find links to them in the box marked ”Chicago Cubs Game Threads” at the bottom of the front page. There will also be a StoryStream on the front page with all the game thread links, as well as the recap after the game is over. The pitcher photos and regular-season stats will return on Opening Day.

Discuss amongst yourselves.