Chicago Cubs 2016 NL Central Championship Gear

marlins logoIf only the Cubs, Marlins, and Astros could somehow face off in a cage match, then we could really learn which team is the best of them all. The Padres could probably join the fight, too. Alas, a series is between just two teams, so the Cubs will have to settle for the Marlins.

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. There’s also some fun stuff, because fun stuff is fun.

We’re Going Streaking

The Cubs lost two of three in Cincinnati, but were in every game. They actually split the series, in terms of runs scored. Their 6-14 record probably includes a great deal of bad luck, but it’s still been an ugly first 20 games.

The Marlins, at 5-16, are actually worse than the Cubs. They will seriously challenge the Astros for the worst record in baseball, something I would have thought impossible back in February.

Game Times and Broadcasts

  • Thursday, April 25 at 6:10 CT on WCIU.
  • Friday, April 26 at 6:10 CT on WGN.
  • Saturday, April 27 at 6:10 CT on CSN+.
  • Sunday, April 28 at 12:10 CT on CSN.


You can get your ticket fix for this or a future series at TiqIq: Cubs tickets. You can also always head over to and get ’em straight from the Cubs.

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: Edwin Jackson (0-3, 4.84), Scott Feldman (0-3, 4.50), Travis Wood (1-1, 2.08), Carlos Villanueva (1-0, 1.53)


  1. David DeJesus, CF
  2. Starlin Castro, SS
  3. Anthony Rizzo, 1B
  4. Alfonso Soriano, LF
  5. Nate Schierholtz, RF
  6. Welington Castillo/Dioner Navarro, C
  7. Luis Valbuena, 3B
  8. Darwin Barney, 2B
  9. Pitcher


Starters: Kevin Slowey (0-2, 1.90), Wade LeBlanc (0-3, 6.27), Alex Sanabia (2-2, 5.09), Ricky Nolasco (1-2, 3.81)


  1. A body
  2. A body
  3. Giancarlo Stanton, RF
  4. A body
  5. A body
  6. A body
  7. A body
  8. A body
  9. Pitcher

Hot or Not and Whom to Watch

Starlin Castro’s hitting streak disappeared in Cincinnati, as did his above-.300 OBP. It now sits at an even .300, buoyed by his three walks.

After a scorching hot start, Nate Schierholtz has cooled a bit in his last seven games, with a .208/.240/.292 line over that stretch.

David DeJesus remains the Cubs’ best hitter to date, with an OPS still over .900 from the leadoff spot. Carlos Villanueva and Travis Wood have been killing it for the rotation, and each is set up for another quality start.

For the Marlins, I won’t insult you by pretending that there is anyone on the big league roster who matters outside of Giancarlo Stanton (and uber prospect Jose Fernandez, whom the Cubs miss this series). He’s still looking for his first homer on the year, and is hitting just .200/.333/.255.

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.

This year, the Series She-View will live over at the Message Board. Here’s your She-View for the Marlins series.

Caption the Enemy

A new feature for the Series Preview this year – since folks on the Internet can’t get enough of cracking wise about pictures, I thought it might be a fun addition to the Series Preview. I’ll drop in a picture (hopefully one ripe for captioning), and you’ll drop in your clever captions into the comments. Then, if there are good ones, we can meme-ify them for use down the road.

Today’s picture is an appropriately disappointed looking Giancarlo Stanton from Marlins Nation:

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