Now this – THIS – is a winnable series.

By way of reminder, the Series Preview hooks you up with what you need to know about every series this year – streaks, broadcast information, pitchers, expected lineups, etc. That way, if you want to check only one place to get a sense about an upcoming series, or to plan ahead, you’ve got it. Oh, and there will be pictures of beautiful women, too.

We’re Going Streaking

The Cubs won the first game of a four-game set with the Reds … and then dropped the final three.

The Astros actually just won a series, taking two of three from the Brewers. Before that, they hadn’t won a series since June. My word, the Astros are bad.

Game Times and Broadcasts

  • Monday, August 13 at 7:05 CT on CSN+.
  • Tuesday, August 14 at 7:05 CT on CSN.
  • Wednesday, August 15 at 1:20 CT on WGN.

Expected Starters and Lineups

These lineups are likely to be pretty close to what actually gets fielded, but you’ll want to check each day’s Pre-Gamin’ post for the actual lineup.


Starters: Jeff Samardzija (7-10, 4.21), Chris Volstad (0-8, 6.94), Justin Germano (1-2, 4.26)


  1. David DeJesus, RF
  2. Darwin Barney, 2B
  3. Anthony Rizzo, 1B
  4. Alfonso Soriano, LF
  5. Starlin Castro, SS
  6. Josh Vitters/Luis Valbuena, 3B
  7. Brett Jackson, CF
  8. Steve Clevenger/Welington Castillo, C
  9. Pitcher


Starters: Armando Galarraga (0-2, 4.70), Lucas Harrell (9-8, 3.97), Bud Norris (5-9, 4.93)


  1. Tyler Greene, SS
  2. Jose Altuve, 2B
  3. Brett Wallace, 3B
  4. Steve Pearce, RF
  5. Scott Moore, 1B
  6. Brian Bogusevic, CF
  7. Fernando Martinez, LF
  8. Jason Castro, C
  9. Pitcher

Hot or Not and Whom to Watch

Alfonso Soriano has cooled a bit, and he managed just two hits in the four-game set against the Reds. At least one of those hits was a homer.

You may not have noticed, since we love him and all that, but Anthony Rizzo is slumping pretty hard. He’s hitting just .196/.255/.283 since July 31.

On the flip side, as I mentioned in yesterday’s EBS, Carlos Marmol is sneakily hot. He’s got his ERA+ all the way up to 91 (which is an incredible accomplishment from where he started), he hasn’t blown a save in months (technically), and he’s got a 1.13 ERA over his last eight innings pitched (during which he’s struck out nine, walked just three, and given up just six hits).

For the Astros, castaway pick-up Steve Pearce has a .368/.447/.500 line since coming over from the Orioles 12 games ago.

As for the rest of the Astros, what do you want me to say? They’ve lost 55 of their last 71 games.

Series She-View

The Series She-View is one beautiful woman representing the Cubs taking on another (usually) beautiful woman representing the opponent. The Cubs’ representative will change as the team’s needs change – in other words, if the Cubs are winning, the rep will stay the same. But if the Cubs’ performance calls for a change, someone new will step in. The opponent’s representative will change from series to series, at my whim. But at least she’ll probably be wearing the opponent’s colors or have some connection to the team or something like that. It is immature, and the connection to baseball is tenuous at best. These things, I know.

I’m going to do it again, and keep Alison Brie as the Cubs’ rep for just one more series. They lost three of four to the Reds, but, I mean, the Reds are good. And I’m just not ready to give up on Alison. Plus, the Astros are terrible, so maybe this will help her as much as it helps the Cubs.

As for the Astros, I’m going with an appropriate representative: Renee Zellweger. Why is she an appropriate rep? Because she’s from Houston, naturally. What did you think I meant … ?


  • Idaho Razorback

    How does Carlos Marmol have a 1.13 era in his last 8 innings pitched?

    • Adam1680

      He gave up one run? runs * IP/9

  • Internet Random

    I feel a little like a 14 year old commenting on the girlie pics lately, but that pic of Alison Brie is like way better than anything that Ansel Adams or Scott Mutter have ever done. EVER.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      I hate to be that guy, but the Brie picture IS an Ansel Adams.

      • Internet Random

        In that case, I’ve been undervaluing his work for too long now.

      • Spencer

        back from the dead and everything!

  • fortyonenorth

    I’m ready for a shark attack tonight. Go Cubs go!

  • hogie

    Are the Astros uneven?

    • Cubbie Blues

      Yes, they are a bit odd.

  • scorecardpaul

    am I wrong to be looking at it in a different way???
    Cubs are currently 7.5 games out of first place, and we have 9 more games against the astros this year???
    lets get the number one pick

    • Flashfire

      We’re bad, the Astros as historically bad. We may lose the #3 pick with that many games left against them.

      • scorecardpaul

        if it meant playing all the kids and loosing these 9 games against houston, would it be better for the team???

        • Flashfire

          Yes, absolutely, I’m just not sure the kids are bad enough to lose these games. The Cubs get grief for playing a AAA roster. I’m not sure the Astros could beat a AAA team right now. They have fully embraced the new draft system.

          • scorecardpaul

            That is my point, maybee the Cubs should fully embrace the new draft system. I’m quite sure we have some quality pitching we could bring up to play them

        • DocPeterWimsey

          It takes two to tango. You can “try” to lose to the Astros: but they don’t have to try; they just do it!

  • jim

    Barney plays every inning rest of way?

  • scorecardpaul

    when I was a kid, my mother used to always say to me….
    If you are going to do something, make sure you do it the best you can, there is no excuse for half an effort

  • JB88

    I would argue that the Cubs’ goal at this point is to finish with the No. 1 pick in the draft, so as long as the Cubs are LOSING, then Alison Brie should remain. Indeed, if we do switch, then if the Cubs win a series, the winning girl should be subbed out. Call this the Mike Quade Girl of the Series Approach (“GOTS”) approach.

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  • Patrick W.

    Ok, who knew Scott Moore was 1) still in baseball, 2) only 28 years old?

  • Johnny

    Now time for the weekly, “Why won’t Adrian Cardenas get a chance to start…ever?” post.

  • Deer

    I completely forgot he was on the roster. Too bad he can’t play 3rd at all.

  • swaz46

    I vote Alison Brie for Cubs rep forever.

    • Jason


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