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brewers logoThe Cubs head back to Wrigley after a very successful road trip, and it’s the final series of July. Bro hug watch is in full effect.

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 just swept the Giants in San Francisco, and they are now 9.5 games behind the second wild card. No, I’m not saying that matters. But it felt like it was worth pointing out.

The Brewers sit lonely at the bottom of the NL Central at 43-61. But for the Marlins, the Brewers would sit at the bottom of the NL, too. And it isn’t going to get better for them.

Game Times and Broadcasts

  • Monday, July 29 at 7:05 CT on CSN.
  • Tuesday, July 30 at 1:20 CT on CSN.
  • Tuesday, July 30 at 7:05 CT on CSN.
  • Wednesday, July 31 at 7:05 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.

Cubs

Starters: Jeff Samardzija (6-9, 3.94), Carlos Villanueva (2-7, 4.23), Jake Arrieta (0-0, -.–), Edwin Jackson (6-11, 4.89)

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. Welington Castillo/Dioner Navarro, C
  8. Darwin Barney, 2B
  9. Pitcher

Brewers

Starters: Kyle Lohse (7-7, 3.37), Yovani Gallardo (8-9, 4.88), TBA, Wily Peralta (7-10, 4.54)

Lineup:

  1. Rickie Weeks, 2B
  2. Norichika Aoki, RF
  3. Jean Segura, SS
  4. Jonathon Lucroy, C
  5. Carlos Gomez, CF
  6. Caleb Gindl, LF
  7. Juan Francisco, 1B
  8. Yuniesky Betancourt, 3B
  9. Pitcher

Hot or Not and Whom to Watch

Jake Arrieta makes his Cubs debut in Tuesday’s double-header as the 26th man. Looking forward to that one.

Nate Schierholtz is scorching over his last eight games, with a .400/.483/.920 line.

Kevin Gregg has given up only one earned run over his last seven innings of work. That’s good. He’s walked seven and allowed seven hits over that same stretch, though.

Junior Lake is 0 for his last 13, which means he’s terrible (in the same sense that his hot start meant that he was a hall of famer).

Obligatory Starlin Castro update, since his day off in Milwaukee in late June: .308/.352/.458 over 128 plate appearances.

You can’t watch Ryan Braun. You know, because he’s suspended. You know, for cheating.

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 Brewers 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 image is from an earlier Cubs/Brewers tilt when Jean Segura did something crazy, and this came after that craziness (via TOOTBLAN):

  • Jon

    Don’t look now, but if the Cubs take care of business, they could be just 5 games under .500 after this series. They are screwing up the master plan of getting one more “top 5″ draft pick though…

    • gocatsgo2003

      I suspect we may be singing a slightly different tune on August 1, after the full force of the trades is really felt. The young guys could very well come together and sustain a little bit of a run toward the end of the year, but I wouldn’t put my money on it.

      • Jon

        Outside of dealing a “couple” of more starters, I don’t see any deadline deals that could debilitate this team like last year.

        Thoyer has done a great job of piecing together some bullpen depth and I think they could easily survive losing some arms in the pen.

        • On The Farm

          Dealing Scheirholtz and Gregg would be a pretty big blow to the team for August and September.

  • CubFan Paul

    I wonder what the asking price is for Schierholtz.

  • willis

    I despise the Brewers. I’d love to see the good play keep going and take at least 3/4 from these guys. Also very interested to see Arrieta pitch tomorrow night.

  • Frank Coggins is dead

    Caption: “No, you’re supposed to do a head first slide! Not slide and then give head!”

  • mudge

    When is Sweeney expected back?

    • On The Farm

      I think his 60 DL stint started 6/30 so that would be 8/30 as his first day back I think?

      • willis

        Such eye candy, I miss that dude.

  • ISU Birds

    The new forehead only helmets the Brewers are wearing look dangerous.

  • sven-erik312

    Dare I say it. If they could sweep the Brewers, they’d be 52/55.
    I remember when the Cubs swept the Mets in August of ’84 which pretty much sealed the division for them. I was there for the final game of that series. It was sweet. After all the recent hardships of the last few seasons, this would be just as sweet. The guys need to end this season on a high note. No one even expected the Cubs to even reach .500. It would be great.

    • Cubbie Blues

      Dare. Dare.

  • http://bleachernation.com Brian

    Segura “DUDE, you totally flipped my lid” Barney “Well, I was saving myself for marriage.”

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