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On The Horizon: Cubs vs. Reds series preview

The Cubs continue a tour through the NL Central.

Michael Chow/The Republic / USA TODAY NETWORK

The Cubs have played three of the four NL Central teams exactly even this year (the exception, oddly, the Pirates). Against the Brewers, Cardinals and Reds they are 11-11, having split four games with the Reds in Cincinnati last month.

For more on the Reds, here’s Wick Terrell, manager of our SB Nation Reds site Red Reporter.

The Cincinnati Reds are really playing baseball this year?


They are, believe it or not, and it’s been just about as mundane as you’d expect from a club who opened the season by losing almost every single one of their first 25 games. And while they’ve managed to get a couple of their reinforcements back from the injured list lately, it’s still a disjointed roster that sure seems rudderless at the moment.

These Reds are fresh off taking two of three from the San Francisco Giants by the bay over the weekend, which was a bit shocking as they needed to break a seven-game losing streak to make that happen. The bulk of that streak came at home in Great American Ball Park, too, a place where even in the darkest of times they’ve still managed to play decently well. Maybe, just maybe, this is going to be a group that bands together and plays a little bit more cohesive when away from the mess that the franchise has become in Cincinnati, though with the trade deadline looming they might not get much chance for cohesion to set in, anyway.

Jonathan India is struggling. Joey Votto is, too. Tyler Stephenson’s still out with a busted thumb, and while Tommy Pham and Brandon Drury have paced the offense, the expectation is they’ll be dealt at any point in the coming weeks. And considering that’s pretty much what’s left right now, that doesn’t exactly scream intimidation right now. That means the Cubs will likely get the onslaught of old friend Albert Almora Jr., Matt Reynolds, Kyle Farmer, & Co., as that’s pretty much what the Reds have to roll out these days.

Fingers crossed the pitching shows up!

Fun fact

In that four-game split in Cincinnati in May, the Reds scored four runs in three of the first four games... and then beat the Cubs 20-5 in the last game of the series.

Probable pitching matchups

Tuesday: Keegan Thompson, RHP (7-2, 3.10 ERA, 1.148 WHIP, 4.13 FIP) vs. Luis Castillo, RHP (2-4, 3.71 ERA, 1.137 WHIP, 3.45 FIP)

Wednesday: Justin Steele, LHP (2-5, 4.59 ERA, 1.454 WHIP, 3.58 FIP) vs. Hunter Greene, RHP (3-8, 5.66 ERA, 1.357 WHIP, 5.69 FIP)

Thursday: Kyle Hendricks, RHP (3-6, 4.90 ERA, 1.301 WHIP, 4.85 FIP) vs. Graham Ashcraft, RHP (4-1, 3.27 ERA, 1.089 WHIP, 3.72 FIP)

Times & TV channels

Tuesday: 7:05 p.m. CT, Marquee Sports Network

Wednesday: 7:05 p.m. CT, Marquee Sports Network

Thursday: 7:05 p.m. CT, Marquee Sports Network


The Reds were awful in April, had a winning record in May and have been mostly awful (8-16 in June. (Not that the Cubs have been any better this month, they are also 8-16 in June.)

So I’m going to go out on a limb and say the Cubs will take two of three.

Up next

The Boston Red Sox visit Wrigley Field for the first time since 2012. The three-game series begins Friday afternoon.


How many games will the Cubs win against the Reds?

This poll is closed

  • 10%
    (15 votes)
  • 39%
    (57 votes)
  • 39%
    (57 votes)
  • 10%
    (15 votes)
144 votes total Vote Now