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2022 MLB Field of Dreams game preview, Chicago Cubs vs. Cincinnati Reds, Thursday 8/11, 6:15 CT

“Is this heaven? No, it’s Iowa.”

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Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

DYERSVILLE, Iowa — Usually in this space, I present a few notes relevant to the day’s game. But because tonight’s game is something different than just another ordinary Cubs/Reds contest, I wanted to post a few thoughts about the Field of Dreams Game, which I’m attending this evening in Iowa.

The Cubs aren’t going anywhere near this year’s postseason (neither are the Reds), so this is a real treat for the players, being part of a special event.

Check out these quotes from Cubs players from this Paul Sullivan column in the Tribune:

“It’s a little part of history,” Cubs shortstop Nico Hoerner said Wednesday after homering in a 4-2 win over the Washington Nationals at Wrigley Field. “Eight thousand people is going to be small, but I feel like everyone there is going to be excited to be there. Just awesome all around.”

“I watched it last year,” Cubs third baseman Patrick Wisdom said. “I saw how special it was. And then when I saw that we were part of it this year, I was just super excited.

“And then to see my name on the (MLB) poster, it was really cool for me. Just honored to be a part of that. ... I know it’s going to be a long day but something I look forward to.”

I’m just as excited as Hoerner and Wisdom; to be a small part of an historic baseball event will be really cool. There won’t, however, be a Field of Dreams Game in 2023:

The iconic facility plans to build a youth baseball and softball complex which will prevent MLB from making a return for a third straight season, according to Baseball Hall of Famer Frank Thomas who is part of the facility’s Go the Distance Baseball ownership group.

“It’s a lot going on,” Thomas told the Des Moines Register. “They don’t want to come back if the stadium’s not prepared.”

More info in this Des Moines Register article.

Here’s a look at the uniforms the teams will be wearing tonight, to give the game an old-fashioned look and feel.

Tomorrow, I’ll post two articles on this game — a traditional recap of the game action and, separately, another article about the entire experience at the Field of Dreams.

This is so true:

Enjoy the game!

Here are today’s particulars.

Cubs lineup:

Reds lineup:

Drew Smyly, LHP vs. Nick Lodolo, LHP


After a few rough outings in July, Drew Smyly was outstanding in his last start, August 6 against the Marlins at Wrigley Field, throwing 6⅔ shutout innings, by far his best outing of 2022.

He has made one start vs. the Reds this year, May 23 in Cincinnati, in which he allowed three runs in 5⅔ innings in a game the Cubs won 7-4.

Nick Lodolo was the Reds’ No. 1 pick (seventh overall) in 2019 out of TCU — the same school that produced Jake Arrieta.

Lodolo was a Top 100 prospect three straight years and made his MLB debut in April, then spent some time in Triple-A before returning in July. He’s made nine MLB starts, some good, some not. He strikes out a lot of hitters — 58 in 43 innings — but also walks a lot of guys, 20 so far.

He has never faced the Cubs or anyone on their active roster. Per the Lodolo graphic below, he throws a lot of offspeed stuff, about 40 percent of the time.

You know, you can probably throw all this out because no one knows how either pitcher’s stuff will play at the Field of Dreams, which was an extreme hitters’ park last year — eight home runs were hit in the 2021 FoD Game.


Today’s game is on Fox-TV (full national broadcast, no blackouts). Check local listings for the Fox-TV affiliate in your market. Fox announcers: Joe Davis, John Smoltz, Tom Verducci and Ken Rosenthal.

This could be fun:

Here is the complete Mediacenter for today. Gameday game preview

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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.