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Chicago Cubs vs. Pittsburgh Pirates preview, Monday 6/19, 6:05 CT

The Cubs open their second series vs. the Bucs in as many weeks.

Photo by Nuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images

Monday notes...

  • BLOWN LEADS: The Cubs let leads of 1-0 and 3-2 slip away yesterday in their 6-3 loss to the Orioles. They had not squandered two leads in a game since May 27, in an 8-5 loss at home to the Reds. They had lost leads twice in four earlier games. They wound up losing at home to the Brewers on April 2, at Cincinnati on April 3 and at Miami on April 28. They won at Oakland on April 19. The Cubs have lost leads 33 times in 26 distinct games. Their record in those games is 9-17. (Courtesy BCB’s JohnW53)
  • VIVE LA DIFFERENTIAL: The Cubs enter action Monday with the only positive run differential in the N.L. Central, +9. The Cardinals are -15, the Brewers -16, the Reds -19 and the Pirates -24.
  • HE’S HOT: Christopher Morel, last eight games since June 10: .414/.419/.931 (12-for-29) with a double, a triple, four home runs and eight runs scored.
  • HE’S NOT: Seiya Suzuki, last 13 games since June 3: .192/.263/.250 (10-for-52), 15 strikeouts.

Here are today’s particulars.

Cubs lineup:

Pirates lineup:

Drew Smyly, LHP vs. Osvaldo Bido, RHP

Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports
Major League Baseball

Drew Smyly had a real good stretch from mid-April to mid-May, but over his last five starts he has a 5.60 ERA and has let opponents hit for a .305 BA and .914 OPS. That isn’t good.

This game is a pitching rematch of last Wednesday at Wrigley Field. Smyly was touched up for three runs in the first inning, but gave the Cubs five more innings to help save the bullpen, and they wound up coming back to win the game.

Osvaldo Bido is making his second MLB start after his debut in that game last week. He allowed just one run in four innings, but threw 91 pitches (also, thus, no Statcast pitch chart yet, as there’s a 100-pitch minimum for those). If the Cubs can work deep counts again and get into the Pirates’ bullpen, that should bode well for this game.


Today’s game is on Marquee Sports Network. Here’s a list of providers currently carrying Marquee.

Here is the complete Mediacenter for today. Gameday 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 2023 Game Thread procedure will be like last year’s, 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.