If it’s possible to distract from a Cubs/Astros tilt, the Oneri Fleita news will probably do it. The Cubs will try to take the series from the Astros – a given? – behind Justin Germano.

Darwin Barney gets a day off, which means we’ll finally see Adrian Cardenas get a start at second, right? Wrong. It’s Luis Valbuena at second, because that totally makes sense.

Game Info

Houston Astros (39-79) at Chicago Cubs (45-70), 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 (5-9, 4.93 ERA, 1.414 WHIP)


Justin Germano (1-2, 4.26 ERA, 1.211 WHIP)

Houston Astros Lineup

1. Jose Altuve, 2B

2. Marwin Gonzalez, SS

3. Steve Pearce, 1B

4. Justin Maxwell, LF

5. Scott Moore, 3B

6. Ben Francisco, RF

7. Jason Castro, C

8. Brandon Barnes, CF

9. Bud Norris, P

Chicago Cubs Lineup

1. David DeJesus, RF

2. Josh Vitters, 3B

3. Anthony Rizzo, 1B

4. Alfonso Soriano, LF

5. Starlin Castro, SS

6. Luis Valbuena, 2B

7. Brett Jackson, CF

8. Steve Clevenger, C

9. Justin Germano, P

  • Luke D

    I kind of wish Barney had gotten the nod at second today…

    could’ve seen a Marwin versus Darwin battle, ultimate showdown of the .600 OPS club.

  • jim

    Rodrigo lopez on dl too. I cubs staff is really decimated!!

  • Stu

    Has anyone asked Theo about Cardenas? Does he not have any chance? Based on what? If Castro/Soriano improve their defense, why not Cardenas? His potential OBP should be enough to give him a shot.

    • Fishin Phil

      I really have no idea why Cardenas is on the roster. If they aren’t going to play him, they might as well just DFA him and be done with it.

  • mudge

    disappointed they can’t get Cardenas a couple games a week, particularly considering the state of the offense.

    • Drew7

      Its ridiculous. Luis effin’ Valbuena MUST start every day. No possible way we could give the Cardenas kid a shot?

      I’m sorry. I don’t get worked up about these things very much, but this is stupid. If you’re gonna give Barney a day off, why not play the former 1st rounder that has done nothing but hit since he get drafted?

  • ssckelley

    I agree, with Barney getting the day off why not give Cardenas some at bats?

  • Flashfire

    Jackson has such a great combination of power and speed. If he could only learn to get those strikeouts into the vaguely manageable range…

  • fortyonenorth

    Off topic question, but here goes.

    Melky Cabrera has been suspended 50 games for testing positive for testosterone. Are’t the league’s policies sufficiently strong to deter the use of PEDs? As a top player, why run the risk of getting caught. Seems kinda tough to get away with it nowadays. I’ve also noticed a lot of suspensions in MILB and, more often than not, it’s Latin American players. Do they just not “get” it?

  • Jason “Thundermug”

    Could the Giants be interested in David Dejesus ? I don’t know if he would make it to waivers to the Giants or get blocked by another team. Or do you think the Cubs want to hold onto him to give a veteran presence in the outfield if they move Soriano this month or the winter

  • DocPeterWimsey

    Man, these two teams make looking bad look so easy……

    • SirCUb

      They’re naturals.

  • Lucas

    Why didn’t they play the stretch on wgn

    • Ben (BG2383)

      I was wondering if I just missed it or something….I also noticed that
      how strange

      • rcleven

        Kurtis is on another network. Rather petty.

        • Ben (BG2383)

          Wow, that is pretty lame….thanks for answering the question

  • Ben (BG2383)

    Why are both Russell and Camp being used if they are concerned about them being overused…..This seems like the perfect game to use Bowden instead

    • rcleven

      Didn’t pitched yesterday and Dale had a chance to see what he has in the pen. Dale still wants to win.

  • J R

    Remember when Joe Mather was Super Joe? He is pretty much Super Turd now..

  • Leroy K.

    Inside MLB is reporting that Soriano has cleared waivers and is eligible to be dealt to a team. Nothing big, we already pretty much knew that.

  • Njriv

    ….Seriously, still not playing Cardenas?…. I’m sorry, but this is just really stupid. What was the point of picking up the kid if you were not going to use him? Ever since the Cubs picked him up and sent him to Iowa, he has been killing the ball. What is the point of bringing him up twice when all you use him for is to pinch hit twice a week and start once every other week? Especially in a lost season that the Cubs are in, what is there to lose? Give him consistent playing time and see if he can actually play in the majors. It’s just ridiculous that even when Barney sits he still can’t get on the field, but for some reason they think Valbuena should start everyday. To me it is just a waste of talent.

    • Njriv

      I know Luke agrees with me.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

        Yep. I’m not a fan of calling up players and letting them rot.