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Chicago Cubs vs. Philadelphia Phillies preview, Thursday 6/29, 7:05 CT

The Cubs look to avoid the sweep.

Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

Thursday notes...

  • RUN SCORING AND WIN CORRELATION: When the Cubs have scored five or more runs this season, they are 22-8, a winning percentage of .733. That is laudable, but the 29 other teams combined are .788, topped by the Braves’ .913 (42-4), the Brewers’ .886 (31-4) and the Padres’ .882 (30-4). When the Cubs have scored exactly five runs, as they did last night, they are just 2-5, .286. That is the lowest percentage among all teams. Only three others are below .500: the White Sox (.444, 4-5), Cardinals and Rays (both .333, 2-4). The other teams are a combined .696. The Padres (9-0) and Red Sox (6-0) are 1.000; the Rangers, .875 (7-1) and the Phillies, .857 (6-1). The Diamondbacks have lost the most such games, seven, but they have won 12, for a .632 percentage. The Giants are 6-5, .545, and the Blue Jays, 5-5, .500. (Courtesy BCB’s JohnW53)
  • MORE ON RUN SCORING: The Cubs remain the only team in the N.L. Central with a positive run differential (+25). The others: Reds -16, Cardinals -17, Brewers -22, Pirates -33.
  • RUN PREVENTION: Over the team’s last seven games since June 19, the Cubs bullpen has thrown 26⅔ innings and allowed 11 hits and nine walks (0.750 WHIP) and two runs (0.68 ERA).
  • NICKY IS ON A ROLL: Nick Madrigal’s three hits Wednesday gave him his ninth multi-hit game of the season and over his last 12 games since June 13: .417/.500/.528 (15-for-36), four doubles, six runs scored.

Here are today’s particulars.

Cubs lineup:

Phillies lineup:

Kyle Hendricks, RHP vs. Taijuan Walker, RHP

Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports
Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

Since his first outing after returning from his shoulder injury when he didn’t throw well, Kyle Hendricks has made five starts and posted a 2.08 ERA and 0.857 WHIP in 30x innings. That’s outstanding. The only thing that hasn’t returned for Kyle is strikeouts, as his K rate is just 4.7 per nine innings. Just remember this:

It’s still true.

Kyle has not faced the Phillies this year — or last year. His last start against them was September 16, 2021 and please don’t click on that link. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

The current Phillie who hits Hendricks best is Josh Harrison, who is 11-for-26 lifetime (.423) with three home runs against Kyle. Kyle, though, has still allowed just one home run this year in 34⅔ innings.

Taijuan Walker threw 5⅓ shutout innings against the Cubs May 21 in Philadelphia. He followed that with two mediocre starts vs. the Braves and Mets, but since those two: Four starts, 0.69 ERA, 0.769 WHIP, not more than one run allowed in any of those games. Caveat: Two of those starts were against the awful A’s and Tigers, but still. This game will not be an easy one.


Today’s game is on Marquee Sports Network. It’s also on MLB Network (outside the Cubs and Phillies market territories). You can find out if Marquee is available via a provider in your area here.

Here is the complete Mediacenter for today. Gameday game preview

Please visit our SB Nation Phillies site The Good Phight. If you do go there to interact with Phillies 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.