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chase fieldTonight’s game certainly has taken on a different character than it looked like it was going to have earlier today. Chris Rusin flies in for another spot start, and we’ll see if he can lock up a short-term rotation role. Junior Lake leads off against a lefty tonight.

Game Info

Chicago Cubs (43-53) at Arizona Diamondbacks (51-47), 8:40 CT on CSN.

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

Chris Rusin (0-0, 8.10 ERA, Undefined K/BB)

versus

Tyler Skaggs (2-1, 4.03 ERA, 2.50 K/BB)

Arizona Diamondbacks Lineup

1. A.J. Pollock, CF

2. Martin Prado, 3B

3. Paul Goldschmidt, 1B

4. Aaron Hill, 2B

5. Miguel Montero, C

6. Cody Ross, LF

7. Gerardo Parra, RF

8. Didi Gregorius, SS

9. Tyler Skaggs, P

Chicago Cubs Lineup

1. Junior Lake, CF

2. Starlin Castro, SS

3. Anthony Rizzo, 1B

4. Alfonso Soriano, LF

5. Cody Ransom, 3B

6. Dioner Navarro, C

7. Cole Gillespie, RF

8. Darwin Barney, 2B

9. Chris Rusin, P

  • cas-castro

    Brett, has Lake faced Tyler Skaggs before? This is interesting lineup.

    • fresno cub fan

      Rusin has retired six straight batters on 24 pitches. Much better than his last start in the show.

  • Rebuilding

    Hendricks pitching another great game tonight 5 IP, 0 ER, 2H, 0 BBs and 6Ks. And it’s against a good Jacksonville team that has some of the Marlins better prospects like Yelich and Marisnick

    • another JP

      Yeah man. Need Hendricks to move to IA ASAP.

  • mudge

    They should call Junior “Superman” and bat him third.

  • Rebuilding

    Navarro is now 16-29 against lefties this season

    • http://www.hookersorcake.com hookersocake

      Yeah I’m suprised Texas didn’t ask for another player like Garza’s slugging caddy, Navarro. You’d a think the Rangers woulda got Soriano or something too for 4 or 5 of their top prospects.

      • Mr. Brent Kennedy

        “Slugging caddy”…nicely done.

  • Rebuilding

    Grilli from Pittsburgh pulled from the game with an injury of some sort. If its anything serious get Schierholtz and Gregg packed

    • mudge

      yep. & Sori to the Big Apple.

  • daveyrosello

    Yankees could also use Valbuena. Problem is that the Yanks minor league system is pretty lousy right now. Slim pickings there.

    • ssckelley

      But the Cubs cannot expect much in return anyway for a utility infielder.

      • Rcleven

        I would hate to loose Valbuena right now. Love his approach at the plate.
        Works counts and makes pitchers throw strikes. Is he best the Cubs can put out there?
        Probably not but he seems to be one of the only players on this team that knows the strike zone.

        • ssckelley

          I agree, I think he has value coming off the bench as a utility infielder. He bats left handed and can play multiple positions.

      • Adam

        Would love to trade Valbuena for even just an upside bullpen arm.

        Let Lake play 3rd.

  • ssckelley

    Bryant got his first RBI driving in DeJesus on a fly ball.

    • ssckelley

      He just got another, this time on his first hit (a double) and drove in DeJesus again.

      • Rebuilding

        Nice. Thanks for the updates

  • Rebuilding

    Gillespie is having a nice night. Base hit and a great catch

  • wvcubsfan

    This Rusin kid appears to be a pretty decent athlete.

  • Drew7

    Lake *crushed* that ball.

  • Earl Cunningham

    The Lake-ness monster with a bomb.

    • Andrew

      I like it haha. I really hope he keeps hitting like he is.

    • another JP

      Lake & Castro on fire together so far… like the 1,2 combo at the top of the order. And keep it going a few more innings Chris…

  • http://Bleachernation Lou Brock

    As Hollie said on pregame show tonight competition at every position brings out the best in players. Nice swing Junior.

  • CoachB

    Watching the D-Back’s broadcast on MLB and Brenly just took a (justified) shot at Cubs lineup after Lake’s HR. Saying Skaggs has to learn how to pitch to guys who you don’t have throw a strike. He rattled off guys who had hurt him past starts Panda, Marlon Byrd, and just now Lake and Castro. Then he says well really yo don’t need to throw anyone in the Cubs lineup a strike. Ha classic Brenly.

    • AD

      Yeah not a big fan of Brenly tonight…

    • Believe in 2015

      Screw Brenly, the Cubs can beat his team any day. Even with Rusin pitching

      • Geo

        I think Calling up lake & putting him in the lineup is good for Castro,there both feeding of each other.

    • ssckelley

      But Brenly is right, these Cubs hitters get themselves out with their lack of patience.

      • wvcubsfan

        While I agree, it was 2-0 on Lake when he hit the bomb, and the pitch seemed to be on the outer portion of the plate but was in the center of the zone vertically.

  • another JP

    Ha, Brenly is just pissed because the Dodgers have all the momentum in the division. Hope we spank the Snakes into submission by taking this series.

  • turn two

    We have ridiculous minor league talent right now. Adding arrieta, edwards maybe ramirez even the pitching is getting some depth. Really excited about the trade today. The only argument against it is that minor leaguers don’t always pan out, but that’s the point, we now have for instance four legit third base options. Bryant, olt, baez, Villanueva. You keep stockpiling these guys and they push each other and you get talent on your roster. Then the positions where no one pans out when you decide your ready, you fill in with free agents. Sooo refreshing after years of buy the best free agents and fill in by forcing your one prospect to rush to majors with the weight of the world on them and play whatever open position we need someone at.

    • Corey

      You can also trade your plus prospects at 3rd for pitchers and catching prospects, which is what we need.

  • willis

    Holy crap that was a blast by Lake. I’m loving this kid.

  • Corey

    Does lake remind anyone else of Sammy?

    Same build, same type of swing.

    • Andrew

      He’s wearing Sammy’s number too. If you didn’t know.

      • Corey

        Wow, I didn’t. Cool.

  • willis

    Time to get that pen ready.

  • Corey

    If Rusin can work around this and not allow a run, I think he could stay up here.

  • Corey

    Nicely done Rusin. Not your fault Lake didn’t call castro off.

  • James

    It’s good to be a Cubs fan. Good young talent coming up and a strong farm system. I’m really interested to see who the Cubs get next at the trade deadline. Very shocked at what the Cubs got for Garza. Listening to people and they all said the Cubs couldn’t get a top 50 prospect for Garza. Well they did and C J Edwards might be the real steal in the trade.

  • Joey

    Kyle Hendricks after today is 9-3 with a 1.91 ERA, think he’s getting the call to AAA soon especially if Arrieta, Rusin or Grimm move into the rotation

  • Beardface

    Bryant’s first hit with the AZL Cubs was a double and 2RBI! Woo!

  • wvcubsfan

    bloop base hit cost us 2 runs, typical

    • Rcleven

      The wild pitch caused one run.

  • Cubswin

    Parker got a lil unlucky there. Got 2 fly balls and a ground ball but still 2 runs. I like him to be a solid reliever in the pen for awhile

  • Believe in 2015

    Junior Lake is really incredible. Another bunt single. Smart, athletic player that totally fits the Cubs way. He better stay with this major league club for the rest of this year

  • Rebuilding

    2 bunt singles and a HR. Lake is exciting if nothing else

    • Kramden

      Hoo-Weee…. Junior Lake!!

      Last Cub rookie I recall coming in and being this exciting was Shawon Dunston.

      Looks like this kid will find a way to stick.

  • ssckelley

    Wow, Lake is fun to watch.

  • willis

    Haha, Lake is pulling out all the tricks.

    • willis

      And then that…

      • wvcubsfan

        That delayed steal thing needs to be forgotten

  • Vulcan

    And that brings Lake’s batting average to .500, folks.

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