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wrigley field from right bleachersThe thing that stinks about the Cubs finally playing a team with a dramatically losing record? It’s a team that, on paper, should be much better than it has been. Turning it around in Chicago would be completely understandable for the Diamondbacks.

Instead, hopefully the Cubs turn their own season around just a little bit, and keep Arizona on the skids.

Travis Wood faces Bronson Arroyo, who seems to pitch well whenever he faces the Cubs, regardless of the personnel. Fortunately, the Cubs are stacking the lineup with lefties to face a guy whose career splits (and it’s an enormous sample size) are about as pronounced as it gets:

  • Arroyo versus righties: .241/.293/.389
  • Arroyo versis lefties: .290/.345/.490

In short, righties have always struggled against Arroyo, and lefties have always crushed him.

Game Info

Arizona Diamondbacks (5-16) at Chicago Cubs (5-12), 7:05 CT on CSN+.

Game Thread and Series Preview

The Game Thread lives here. 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 lives here.

Starting Pitchers

Bronson Arroyo (9.95 ERA, 7.42 FIP, 4.79 xFIP; 1.50 K/BB)

versus

Travis Wood (3.00 ERA, 2.52 FIP, 3.13 xFIP; 4.75 K/BB)

Arizona Diamondbacks Lineup

1. Chris Owings, SS

2. Aaron Hill, 2B

3. Paul Goldschmidt, 1B

4. Martin Prado, 3B

5. Cody Ross, RF

6. Mark Trumbo, LF

7. Miguel Montero, C

8. Tony Campana, CF

9. Bronson Arroyo, P

Chicago Cubs Lineup

1. Emilio Bonifacio, 2B

2. Luis Valbuena, 3B

3. Anthony Rizzo, 1B

4. Nate Schierholtz, RF

5. Starlin Castro, SS

6. Ryan Sweeney, CF

7. Welington Castillo, C

8. Ryan Kalish, LF

9. Travis Wood, P

  • ssckelley

    Jeez, I really think the Cubs missed the boat on trading Schierholtz. Now nobody is going to want him.

  • josh ruiter

    Soooooooo…the heck with the stats and splits tonight…it will be righties crushing Arroyo despite having only 3 in the lineup…And damn straight we are in the NL where T. Wood can mash baseballs.

  • MaxM1908

    I agree about locking up Wood. I think I would be more excited to see him extended than Shark. I like Shark a lot, but he is not an ace, and I’m starting to resent his attitude that he should paid like one. I’d much rather see him and his remaining year of control converted into an impressive haul of prospects.

    • ssckelley

      The Cubs don’t need more prospects right now, if they do have to trade Shark it needs to be for MLB ready players.

      • MaxM1908

        Fair enough. But, I think you still want to stock the farm with top prospects in a trade like that, even if you are able to get 1 or 2 MLB-ready players. We need pitching at all levels.

    • http://BN Sacko

      Shark is our Ace and I’d like to keep him.

  • http://deepcenterfield.mlblogs.com/ Jason Powers

    Choo Choo left yard in Oaktown. A game of decent value to watch.

    Donnie Murphy playing for Texas.

  • Jon

    So what’s worse Cubs hitting with RISP or Blackhawks power play?

  • Karl Groucho

    Just noticed Owings is starting at SS for AZ today. Anytime I feel even remotely unhappy with our FO, I’ll just think of Towers trading away valuable assets for two SSs in one offseason…neither of whom is getting much playing time one year later.

    • Jon

      I’m only disappointed the Cubs couldn’t get in on any of that action

      • ssckelley

        Actually they did get a couple of interesting pitching prospects out of Campana.

        • MaxM1908

          Anyone know where Erick Leal or Jesus Catillo will be this year? AZ or Boise?

          • Melrosepad

            According to the online rosters from milb.com Jesus Castillo is still on the VSL Cubs team and Leal is on the Arizona league team. This might still be showing last years rosters though.

            • MaxM1908

              Thanks. I looked up their stats on Baseball reference from last year. It looks like both may have some upside potential. So young though, impossible to know what they could develop into.

          • ssckelley

            Leal has a shot at making the Boise roster but might end up back in rookie ball. Both are still very young but Leal has impressed so far.

  • MaxM1908

    Our pitcher is our best hitter. Take that Campana. Where’s your scrappiness now?

  • mjhurdle

    T Wood > Campana

  • Karl Groucho

    T WOOD gonna get the cycle today???

  • cubmig

    Damn. Who is this Wood? He’s got a beautiful swing. This is his night so far.

  • peoriadude

    Does anyone else, besides Wood, have a 4 RBI day yet this year? Soooo sad.

    • peoriadude

      Yes, Castro had 4 RBIs on 2 homers v. Pitt. 4/8. Still sad.

  • Patrick W.

    This game is flying … 100 minutes in the bottom of the 6th. On pace for 2:35 or so.

    • Patrick W.

      2:40 final time. If not for that last walk …

  • ssckelley

    Why would you not send Castro in that situation? Campana has no arm!

    • Drew7

      Load em up with nobody out, with the next 2 hitters a combined 4-4 to that point, and with a 4-run lead.

      Good hold, even if the result wasn’t good.

      • ssckelley

        I would agree with about anybody else playing centerfield, but you run on Campana every chance you get. The third base coach cost the Cubs a run.

        • willis

          Correct. Take the given runs when they are there. Campana has a noodle arm, castro has ok wheels…send him. I’m very glad it was a non issue at the end of the day, but damn that was a bad hold.

  • MaxM1908

    Oh man, bases loaded, no one out, and Wood on deck. Arroyo has to be shakin in his boots.

    • Karl Groucho

      Hahaha I cracked up at the pitching change before Wood

  • peoriadude

    I noticed the Cubs lost their radio station in Bloomington/Normal this year. The WGN AM signal is crappy. And I’m already annoyed with the stupid filler/background music they use, woah oh oh oh, repeat incessantly. Still mad they left Peoria with the A club, since I’m still complaining. That is all.

  • Karl Groucho

    Double play with the bases loaded, what do we pay this guy for

  • njmass

    I don’t think I have ever seen a pitcher get the 8 hitter out, then get taken out of the game because the opposing pitcher is up. I love Travis Wood.

  • ssckelley

    Third base coach should have sent Castro on Castillo’s hit. He would have scored easily.

    • benjamin

      Eh I’m not so sure. I’m at the game and from here (CF bleachers) it looked like the ball was on the way in about when Castro was hitting third. He might have scored, but it would have been very close.

      • ssckelley

        Did you see Campana’s hard throw barely made it to the pitcher?

        • benjamin

          Honestly no. I saw the ball fly and then looked to see if Castro was getting sent.

          Poor Campy.

  • benjamin

    They allowed the Reds an absurd amount of time to make that pitching change.

  • Medicos

    HAWKEY TALK

    BlackHawks win 2-0. Corey Crawford 34-saves. Goals by Toews and Kruger.

    Blues—2 Hawks—-1

    • cubsfan08

      YUP! Then flip over to the Cubs game and catch a quick bat flip!

  • Rudy N

    There’s that Valbueezy bat flip!

    • Rudy N

      Lol, dont know how my phone just got Valbueezy,,, but I kinda like it!

  • Medicos

    Chris Sale on the DL. That’s what happens when the manager lets a pitcher throw 125-pitches in a game.

    • fromthemitten

      lol Randy Johnson begs to differ

  • cubmig

    Good Wood. Good Game.

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