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It’s raining at Wrigley Field today, and the game isn’t expected to start on time. Might be a slight delay.

So, the Cubs are going to have to get swept in this series if they want to get back to their .333 pace.

Game Info

Houston Astros (32-44) at Chicago Cubs (26-49), 1:20pm CT on WGN.

Game Thread and Series Preview

The Game Thread lives here. You should participate in the madness. And, of course, for those who aren’t into message board-style game threads, please feel free to use the comments on this post for your in-game commentary/outbursts.

The Series Preview for this series lives here.

Starting Pitchers

Bud Norris (5-4, 4.81 ERA, 2.89 K/BB)

versus

Paul Maholm (4-6, 5.38 ERA, 1.96 K/BB)

Houston Astros Lineup

1. Brian Bixler, SS

2. Brian Bogusevic, RF

3. Carlos Lee, 1B

4. J.D. Martinez, LF

5. Chris Snyder, C

6. Chris Johnson, 3B

7. Matt Downs, 2B

8. Jordan Schafer, CF

9. Bud Norris, P

Chicago Cubs Lineup

1. David DeJesus, CF

2. Starlin Castro, SS

3. Anthony Rizzo, 1B

4. Alfonso Soriano, LF

5. Brian LaHair, RF

6. Steve Clevenger, C

7. Darwin Barney, 2B

8. Luis Valbuena, 3B

9. Paul Maholm, P

  • BD

    Well, you heard it here first- the Cubs are losing all 3 this weekend.

  • Serious Cubs Fan

    Brett,

    Gut feeling, when are we going to see the Cubs make there first trade? A week? 2 Weeks? Right before the deadline?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Gut says right around the All-Star break for the first one. Majority will come (if at all) that final week of July. Hopefully, for the purposes of the Blog-a-thon (about which, more soon), they save the best moves for the 30th/31st.

      • Kyle

        I’m going to predict that we get nothing until the last week before the deadline.

  • gratefulled

    GO CUBS!!!

  • Leroy K.

    naturally its raining and they are actually showing the game on tv here in england…

  • RY34

    hey, nobody gets swept better than our flubs! we take pride in leading the league in something!

    • Carew

      Am I the only one that doesnt like the term flubs?

      • Leroy K.

        I hate it. that is an “ESPN” thing…that or Scrubs, which equally irritates me.

        • RY34

          my bad, will never use it again, unless we get swept this series…….

        • Carew

          IMO it shows a lot of disrespect

          • Chris

            I’ve always had that nick-name for the Cubs. The “Flubs” is my derogatory name I pull out when the organization is really pissing me off. Needless to say, I’ve called them the Flubs often

          • RY34

            yeah i’m w chris, i dont mean any disrespect but lets face it, the cubs sure do and have give(n) plenty of reasons to be called that; i often find myself feeling disrespected by the cubs play every now and then.

        • Ogyu

          “Flubs” and “Scrubs” have become hackneyed through overuse. I recommend: Drubs, Grubs, Nubs, Shrubs, or Stubs.

          • EQ76

            keep it simple.. Crubs

  • Dave H

    They’ll get the game in. A fast paced storm blew in and cooled it off a bit here.

    • Leroy K.

      Thanks Dave. I hope so.

  • Leroy K.

    i hope the astros announcers are decent…gotta love espn america

    • JOF

      Going to watch on MLB.tv. Cant beat Len and Bob.

      • Gabriel

        so true – Len and Bob are the greatest. And I swear I’m not being biased!

  • Leroy K.

    can we get through a game without bartman being brought up???

  • PKJ

    Remember those days when we used to win games? Like lots of them?

    I miss those days.

    • http://facebook.com/thechoices WeedyMcChronic

      what days were those?

      • Kyle

        most of 2003-2008

    • Kyle

      Was that really as much fun as drooling over prospects and draft position?

      • PKJ

        OOOH. Draft Position.
        You’re so right.

  • Still Love the Cubs

    I’m really surprised how few starts that Soto has been getting since coming back from DL. It seems as thought they’ve given up on the idea of trading him this year because they certainly aren’t auditioning him too much lately.

    • RY34

      they realize the glaring reality of the situation.

    • willis

      I think it’s because auditioning him isn’t going to help move him. He’s been too bad for anyone to give up any value for him. And he simply hurts this team’s chances to win games. Clevenger is better both offensively and defensively so I hope he gets a long look. Even with Soto active.

  • Jason “Thundermug”

    Has anyyone heard if the Cubs are close to signing any of these Draft Picks ?

    1st Round Albert Almora /1a Duane Underwood /12th Round Justin Amlung/
    19th Round Damek Tomscha /20th Round Blake Hickman

  • Leroy K.

    I am NOT getting into a wrigley field debate on this page, however, I hope they celebrate Wrigley during its 100 year anniversary as much as they are celebrating Fenway this year. It seems that ESPN America has a fixation with Fenway this year….(I know, I know)

  • TonyP

    Wells cleared waivers and was outrighted to AAA.

    • Patrick G

      Just read on mlbtraderumors.com that the Blue Jays are interested in Garza, but also possibly interested in Wells. Pretty sure we can’t get anything for him, but hey a new low level prospect would be better then having Wells in our system.

      • TonyP

        I agree,  I think Wells needs to move on at this point.

  • RY34

    totally shocked nobody snatched wells up! nah not really.

  • Leroy K.

    Carlos Lee is a fatty!!!!

  • Leroy K.

    At least Soriano ran that time.

  • Leroy K.

    I’m surprised that wasn’t an error.

  • Leroy K.

    Playing great defense right now!!!

  • Quintz

    Stupid, off topic question. Do the Cubs have to put Soler on the 40 man roster when he signs (and why)?

    • ETS

      If it’s a major league deal, yes. If it’s not a major league deal then no. I think it is a major league deal, but haven’t seen the contact details (other than I know he can opt out and go through normal arbitration once he is eligible).

  • http://bleachernation.com RicoSanto

    What could we get from LA if we send them Lahair and Dempster. how about Nate Evoladi, Chris Reed (LP) and either Alan Webster (RHP) or Alfredfo Silvero (OF )

    • Patrick G

      I like this trade and think they could maybe get all 3 for those 2. Alfredo Silvero looks good but has had some injury issues and is 25 and still needs some seasoning in the minors. Reed looks like an MLB pitcher and Evoladi is MLB ready.

  • CityCub

    Are the Cubs going to go back to Stewy when he comes back from being hurt. Or are they gonna stick with valbuena ?

    • Leroy K.

      Hit another homerun today. (3). I will go with Valbuena…

      • CityCub

        Yeah I’m hoping so. And I’m still hoping that Vitters develops even more the rest of this season. He’s playing pretty well right now in triple a. I’m pretty sick of seeing Stewart play everyday. This “injury” time has been a great vacation for my eyes lol.

    • hansman1982

      Stewy might be shut down for a long-while so Valbuena will get his shot.

      • Vladimir

        It doesn’t matter “stewy” or “vally”, either are placeholders. Vitters if he continues to grow and improve will be called up next june just like Rizzo was called up this june.

  • Mysterious4th

    Totally diggin luis valbuena

  • RY34

    wow, there it is, a nice four pitch walk to bud norris! quit walking freakin pitchers!

    • Leroy K.

      we’re up by 4. For the first time, I’m not concerned! LOL….

  • CityCub

    Kinda surprised to see Maholm dealing today.

  • Leroy K.

    Poor Lee….nobody deserves to get the “money shot” took a ball to the….well…balls…

  • RY34

    oh shit, marmol is in

  • Ogyu

    Okay, time for Marmol to get in there and protect the Cubs’ 2013 draft position!

  • Leroy K.

    Leave it to Marmol to make things interesting.

  • Leroy K.

    Cubs win!!!!!

  • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

    No EBS for a while – massive storms here, and what looks to be a long power outage (on my phone right now).

    • Spencer

      my power just came on after 5.5 hours. had to go out to my car to charge my phone. crazy.

      • Leroy K.

        very good defensive game for the Cubs…

    • MichiganGoat

      Horrible drought here in West Michigan, been 90+ for almost a week now, and no rain in the forecast.

      • RY34

        109 degrees here in tennessee today, have had a quarter inch of rain all month; dry as a bone.

        • Sweetjamesjones

          Yeah the weather in Tennessee isnt kidding around. Pretty damn hot down here.

          • Leroy K.

            miss Tennessee…

            • Andrew

              I’m taking the family to the Smokies game on July 4th. Most of my minor league experience is at our crappy park here in Nashville whenever Iowa comes to town. Anybody who’s been to the ballpark there – you guys have any pointers to make it the best experience for the whole family (me, wife, 5-year-old girl)?

              Also – yes. It’s dang hot here. Weather Channel app said we hit 109 today in Nashville. Highest temp EVER before was 107.

              • RY34

                yeah the nashville sounds place is quite the embarrassment; shocked mlb allows them to even play there.

                • Sweetjamesjones

                  I totally agree. That ugly ass guitar scoreboard: UGH. Going to the I-Cubs/Sounds on Saturday. I will probably catch on fire.

                  • Andrew

                    One pointer so you don’t catch on fire – as long as you have a ticket to the game (anywhere in the park) you can actually enter at the entrance to the restaurant (I think it’s called Slugger’s) from outside the park behind homeplate and eat dinner/watch the game from the air conditioning. It’s not necessarily the ballpark atmosphere, but my dad and I go to games and watch from the restaurant until we can see that our seats are in the shade (I’m a pale dude with skin cancer history, so I’m extra cautious), and then head down to our seats at about the 3rd or 4th inning.

              • Sweetjamesjones

                @Andrew, you should just go to the Cubs/Braves games. Tickets at Turner Field are hella cheap. There are also tons of more Cub fans there as well.

                • Andrew

                  Yeah. I’ll already be in Gatlinburg with the family, so the Smokies it is. I try to catch a couple Cubs games at either Cincinnati or Atlanta each year, along with a weekend trip to Wrigley. Don’t think the Atlanta/Cincinnati part will happen this year, but Wrigley’s still on and I’ll catch this Smokies game along with a couple I-Cubs/Sounds games at the end of August.

                  • Sweetjamesjones

                    Oh that’s cool. What part of TN are you from?

                    • Andrew

                      I’m from Nashville. Lived in lots of suburbs, but have spent almost all of my life here – even when Greer Stadium was a decent place to watch a game.

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