The Chicago Cubs now head back out on the road for a three-game set with the Atlanta Braves. The Braves aren’t quite the team they once were, so this is a very winnable series for the otherwise reeling Cubs. A refresher on the series preview here at Bleacher Nation:
The idea is to hook you up with the bare minimum of what you need to know about every series this year. That way you can look like a genius, hardcore fan in front of all your friends, with minimum effort. Oh, and there will be pictures of hot chicks, too.
We’re Going Streaking
The Cubs managed to split a four-game set with the best team in the National League – a relatively good sign. They’re still digging their way out of the bottom half of the NL Central, though.
The Braves, losers of five of their last seven, are actually not too far from the top of the NL East standings. Ok, I’m making them sound a lot worse than they’ve been – they’re a .500 club so far. Practically identical to a certain cubbish team.
Game Times and Broadcasts
- Tuesday, June 2 at 6:00 CT on WGN.
- Wednesday, June 3 at 6:00 CT on CSN.
- Thursday, June 4 at 6:00 CT on CSN and MLBn.
Expected Starters and Lineups
These lineups are likely to be, well, wrong. But they’ll be close.
Starters: Randy Wells (0-2, 1.80), Ted Lilly (6-4, 3.50), Carlos Zambrano (3-2, 4.22)
- Soriano, LF (might sit out a game or two, though – which is awesome)
- Theriot, SS
- Fukudome, CF
- Lee, 1B
- Bradley, RF
- Soto, C
- Fontenot, 3B
- Scales, 2B
Starters: Kenshin Kawakami (3-6, 4.73), Derek Lowe (6-3, 3.49), Jair Jurrgens (5-2, 2.59)
- Kelly Johnson, 2B
- Yunel Escobar, SS
- Larry Jones, 3B
- Brian McCann, C
- Garret Anderson, LF
- Casey Kotchman, 1B
- Matt Diaz, RF
- Jordan Shafer, CF
Hot or Not and Whom to Watch
Keep your eye on Geovany Soto – if he can’t break out against the Braves, he’s never going to. That’s because he absolutely wrecked the Braves last year to the tune of a healthy .476 average. Milton Bradley has started to hit just a little bit, and so has newly, firmly-ensconced third baseman Mike Fontenot.
Naturally, the Cubs face the Braves’ two best pitchers in Lowe and Jurrgens. Derek Lowe, in particular, has just seemed to pwn the Cubs for eons. The Braves offense has been, in a word, not very good (yes, that was a joke). The nine-run breakout on Sunday was nice, but can they sustain it?
And now the best part of the preview: if the teams were represented by beautiful women, who would they be, and what would the match up look like. I thought long and hard about who would represent the Cubs this year. Given the fact that she’s thrown out the first pitch, sung the Seventh Inning Stretch, probably likes the Cubs – oh, and the fact that she is a level of hot commensurate with the Chicago Cubs’ ability, I’ve chosen supermodel Marisa Miller. You’re welcome.
For the Atlanta Braves, there were actually quite a few good options: 90210 hotty AnnaLyne McCord, songstress Kelly Rowland, or ESPN hotty Erin Andrews (don’t worry, we’ll get her in here somewhere). But you know what? The whole point of this Series She-View thing is to find a woman who aptly represents the Cubs’ opponent.
So for the Braves, we need someone steady. Consistent. Someone who became really good in the early 1990s, and has been solid ever since (well, maybe except the last three or four years – wait for the payoff, it’s still apt). That makes the choice easy: it’s Snellville, Georgia birthee, Julia Roberts.
Julia Roberts burst on the scene with such wonderful films as Mystic Pizza and Steel Magnolias. At least that’s what IMDB says. And she hasn’t let up since – and she’s had, like, kids and stuff.
So, the steady vet or the scrappy, ridiculous hot model? Your choice. It’s a black and white match-up.