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Chicago Cubs vs. Pittsburgh Pirates preview, Tuesday 5/17, 6:40 CT

The Cubs go for their fourth straight win.

Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

Today’s roster move: Here

Tuesday notes...

  • SHUTOUTS: The Cubs have recorded five shutouts already in 2022. They had only eight all of 2021. The five blankings rank fifth in MLB.
  • WEIRD NUMBER OF THE DAY: The Cubs are now 5-11 at home, but have outscored their opponents 48-6 in the five victories. According to STATS Inc., the +42 run differential is the most by any team in its first five home wins of a season since the New York Giants in 1893 (+43).
  • SWITCH-HITTING: Ian Happ last night recorded two hits in the first inning, one from each side of the plate. He became the first Cub to have two hits in any inning, one from each side of the plate, since Ángel Pagán, September 6, 2006, also vs. Pittsburgh (eighth inning).
  • THE FIRST INNING: The eight runs scored in the first inning marked the Cubs’ most in a first inning since also scoring eight in the first April 21, 2004 at Pittsburgh (12-1 win). And, it marked the team’s most first-inning runs at Wrigley Field since also scoring eight first-inning runs April 18, 1998 vs. the Dodgers (8-1 win).

Here are today’s particulars.

Cubs lineup:

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

Keegan Thompson, RHP vs. JT Brubaker, RHP

USA TODAY NETWORK
USA TODAY NETWORK

Keegan Thompson’s last outing, a start May 11 against the Padres, was a bit shaky: two runs in four innings, with a pair of walks and only one strikeout.

That compares to just three runs allowed in 23 innings in relief this year, with a .184 opponents BA and 21 strikeouts.

One of those relief outings was against the Pirates April 22 at Wrigley Field, his longest relief appearance of 2022: four shutout innings with two hits and a walk allowed and four strikeouts. He threw 56 pitches that day; he threw 61 in his start last Wednesday. I’d guess somewhere in the 65-pitch range would be his limit tonight.

JT Brubaker’s 5.34 ERA and 1.385 WHIP aren’t great, but his peripherals are pretty good and the ERA has been dropping since he faced the Cubs April 24 at Wrigley Field. Since then: 4.20 ERA and 1.133 WHIP, with 16 strikeouts in 15 innings.

Brubaker’s pitch count high this year is 94, but that was April 19 and he hasn’t thrown more than 83 in a start since then. So, if the Cubs can get to him early...

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 Pirates site Bucs Dugout. If you do go there to interact with Pirates 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.