chase fieldFirst with the thing that catches your eye immediately: in the midst of serious trade rumors and the front office discussing possible options with Alfonso Soriano, he is not in tonight’s lineup. Before you run wild with conclusions (though some wondering is warranted), consider that the Cubs face a righty tonight, and David DeJesus is back. That means that, unless Junior Lake was going to be benched, one of Soriano, DeJesus, or Nate Schierholtz was going to have to sit. Given everything going on, Soriano probably made the most sense regardless of a trade. Soriano has good career numbers against Ian Kennedy, apparently, but sample size and all that. The official word is that this is just a day off for Soriano.

Should you be on alert for a trade? Maybe. But, even if Soriano sitting is tied to a possible deal, that doesn’t mean the deal will actually get done. (But, you know, Bro Hug Alert.)

Not to be lost in the above: David DeJesus is back, and he’s back a little earlier than expected. Obviously his shoulder strain was feeling good, and it’s nice to see him back in the lineup. Junior Lake stays up, as expected, and Dave Sappelt has been sent back to Iowa (again, as expected).

Game Info

Chicago Cubs (44-54) at Arizona Diamondbacks (52-48), 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

Jeff Samardzija (6-9, 3.91 ERA, 3.66 FIP)


Ian Kennedy (3-7, 5.29 ERA, 4.62 FIP)

Arizona Diamondbacks Lineup

1. Adam Eaton, CF

2. Gerardo Parra, RF

3. Paul Goldschmidt, 1B

4. Eric Chavez, 3B

5. Martin Prado, 2B

6. Jason Kubel, LF

7. Wil Nieves, C

8. Didi Gregorius, SS

9. Ian Kennedy, P

Chicago Cubs Lineup

1. David DeJesus, CF

2. Junior Lake, LF

3. Anthony Rizzo, 1B

4. Nate Schierholtz, RF

5. Starlin Castro, SS

6. Luis Valbuena, 3B

7. Darwin Barney, 2B

8. Welington Castillo, C

9. Jeff Samardzija, P

  • True blue

    Go Rangers and Garza. I

  • someday…2015?

    .@BoiseHawks 0, Eugene 0 (Mid 1) – Kris Bryant two out ground rule 2B, Rogers follows with single but stranded
    7:13pm – 24 Jul 13

    He’s just shaking the rust off.

    • someday…2015?

      Bryant just misses his first Cubs HR…

      Tweet from @BoiseHawksRadio
      @BoiseHawks 0, Eugene 0 (Mid 3) – Bote extends hit streak to 6, Bryant flies out to warning track in CF

      • someday…2015?

        Looks like Bryant will end the night 1-4 with a 2B and 3 fly outs. Not a bad rebound from the platinum sombrero.

        • Cubman23

          Point taken, but literally anything would have been ‘not a bad rebound’ from 5 k’s.

  • Tobias

    Olt singled in his first AB with Iowa.

    • SirCub

      Call him up!

    • Rebuilding

      It was his 3rd AB. K and a groundout the first two

    • baldtaxguy

      and 3 K’s.

  • Jonathn

    Just heard Garza is pitching well for Texas but has an error that lead to an unearned run. Reminds me of that throw to “first” that actually ended up in the stands. Can someone bring that video back for old time’s sake?

  • Rich

    Watching Graza
    He looks real good
    Fired up as always
    His throw to first was classic Garza
    Not even close three base error
    Winning 2-1

  • Rich

    He’s done
    Great start for Garza

  • another JP

    Junior. You are amazing dude.

  • Corey

    Junior Lake is juicing.

    It’s the only answer.

    When will teams stop throwing him first pitch strikes?

    • Tobias

      Don’t even joke about that Corey. It’s comments like that will lead to more comments like yours and then the kid has a cloud over his head. Could it be that he is a good hitter?

      • Jp3

        Braun was a good hitter. Just saying

      • TWC

        I think Tobias is juicing.

        • DarthHater

          Cranberry juicing. 😛

          • TWC

            I hear it’s good for bladder infections.

            • DarthHater


              • Jp3

                My wife drinks it when she’s on her period

  • cub123

    Open up that can of whoop ass Nate!!!!

  • Derek

    MLB teams come get em while they’re hot!

  • Seth

    This ump has the smallest strike zone I’ve ever seen.

    • SirCub

      Freaking Angel Hernandez….

  • Kyle

    Did anyone notice that Josh Vitters has a 10.9% BB rate through 92 AAA PAs this year?

    Anyone? Cool.

    • Drew7

      Probably, but they didn’t post it for fear of the Fist Of Logic pounding it down with a SSS-alert.

      • Kyle

        It’s OK to notice stuff. You just get a pounding for drawing conclusions from them.

        Though BB rates do stabilize pretty quickly.

        • Drew7

          Sorry, forgot the :)

  • SirCub
  • Hatfield

    Garza still with the yips.

    I’ve always been a big fan of his, but I will never not laugh when he throws it 10 ft. wide of first.

  • Josh t

    You guys think Samardzija’s +4.00era will help the cubs at the negotiation table for an extension. He has great stuff and I feel like he cruises till he hits a rough inning in most starts. He wants BIG money if he signs a new deal but thus far he hasn’t showed he worth it.

  • Required

    Can someone remind me why Darwin Barney is an everyday player?

    • SirCub

      Um, cause he’s been worth four and a half wins above replacement by defense alone the past year and a half…

      • Required

        Not this year. Guys barely hitting his weight and his gold glove must be too heavy to make the plays he did last year. The only thing I see him contributing to is a better draft pick.

        • SirCub

          Good point. I revise my original response to:

          “Because he’s on the Cubs.”

    • Jason P

      Because his replacement would be a similar hitter with less defense a la Brent Lillibridge, Alberto Gonzalez, etc.

      Who do ya want? Donnie Murphy?

  • Cubman23

    I just awoke from the strangest dream – the Cubs were discussing trading Kevin Gregg as a set-up man to contending teams and the return was more than a sack of potatoes. I’ve got to lay off the Mexican food for dinner…

  • MikeCubs23

    Gregg really pumping up his value!

  • willis

    Ugh, blowing a 6-0 lead, and no one left in the pen once Bell dominates them in the 11th.

    • Jason P

      If this goes to the 14th, maybe we could see Lake pitch!

      And actually, I only half-kid. Bowden threw 37 yesterday, so who knows if he’s available even in emergencies. I don’t know if Sveum would ever dip into his starters for an extra inning contest, but if not, you’ve got to figure Lake’s his guy.

  • Jason P

    Thank you Nate Schierholtz! He’s finding his groove again and it couldn’t come at a better time. Gotta love his hit it where it’s pitched approach.

  • X the Cubs Fan


  • willis

    Wow, what a win. Good for the cubs and very nice for Rondon. He brought his talent tonight. Every win is a good win. Schierholtz is and has been a great player for this team. Maybe hold onto him for next season.

    • Jason P

      Absolutely if you can’t find a good return for him. He’s cheap, fundamentally sound, and has a model approach for the “Cubs Way”.