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Chicago Cubs vs. Atlanta Braves preview, Tuesday 4/26, 6:20 CT

The Cubs open a three-game set at Truist Park.

Photo by Nuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images

Tuesday notes...

  • SOME FIRSTS: The Cubs have scored 16 first-inning runs, third-most in the majors behind the Angels (22) and the Mariners (17). Overall in the first inning this year the Cubs have batted .339/.456/.532 (21-for-62) with three doubles, three homers and a .988 OPS.
  • KEEGAN IS KEEN: Keegan Thompson is the fifth Cubs pitcher with four scoreless relief appearances of at least eight outs in a month since 1893. The others are quite the eclectic group: Mike Proly (four outings, August 1982), Bill Stoneman (six outings, August 1967), Bill Henry (four outings, May 1959) and Vito Valentinetti, who did it twice (four outings, June 1956 and 4 outings, May 1956). (H/T: Ed Hartig)
  • WORDS OF WISDOM: Over Patrick Wisdom’s last nine games (seven starts): .407/.500/.815 (11-for-27) with five doubles, two home runs, nine runs scored and five walks.
  • GOOD AGAINST ATLANTA: Jonathan Villar has a career slash line of .306/.381/.496 (34-for-111) with nine doubles, four homers, nine RBI, 14 walks in 33 career games against the Braves. Willson Contreras against the Braves is batting .291/.380/.684 (23-for-79) with eight homers and 23 RBI in 22 games.

Here are today’s particulars.

Cubs lineup:

Braves lineup:

Marcus Stroman, RHP vs. Max Fried, LHP

USA TODAY NETWORK
USA TODAY NETWORK

Marcus Stroman, yikes. One good start (against the Brewers), two bad ones (Rockies and Rays). He’s better than this, absolutely.

In his last start against the Braves, July 26, 2021, he allowed two runs in five innings (in the first game of a seven-inning doubleheader).

Several Braves have hit him well, including Dansby Swanson (5-for-11), Eddie Rosario (3-for-9, two home runs) and Ozzie Albies (5-for-13).

Let’s hope for better from Marcus tonight.

Last time out, a week ago today, Max Fried threw seven shutout innings against the Dodgers, allowing only two hits. He hasn’t given up a home run yet this year in 18 total innings.

Doom, right?

Maybe not so fast. While Fried is death on LH hitters (3-for-16 so far this year), righthanded Cubs hitters have hit lefties reasonably well this year, .252/.330/.437 (42-for-167) with six home runs.

Fried has not faced the Cubs since June 25, 2019 and there are only two Cubs who played in that game still with the team (Willson Contreras, Jason Heyward) so that’s largely irrelevant. Jonathan Villar is 4-for-11 (.364) against Fried and Ian Happ is 2-for-2 with a home run. Small sample size caveats apply here, of course.

Statcast
Statcast

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 Braves site Battery Power. If you do go there to interact with Braves 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 2022 Game Thread procedure will be like last years, 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.