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wrigley field from right bleachersThe Cubs and White Sox “rivalry” has lost a little luster in recent years, as neither team has been particularly competitive, and the series has been a bit marginalized by changes in interleague play.

But, I’m still a sucker for it. Cardinals and White Sox back-to-back. That’s pretty cool. The Cubs took down the Cardinals, and now it’s on to the White Sox.

Jeff Samardzija starts tonight against lefty Jose Quintana, and the Cubs respond accordingly with a lot of righties in the lineup. Samardzija has yet to make a start that was a real egg, although his last time out against the Reds (5.2 IP, 3 ER, 8 H, 4 BB, 4 K) was his worst effort of the year. He’ll get a DH-less White Sox lineup tonight to get back to his dominant ways.

Speaking of that lineup … how do you get Adam Dunn and Jose Abreu in the lineup without a DH? Well, you’ve gotta throw one of them into the outfield. Dunn is the sacrificial lamb tonight, where he’ll battle the idiosyncrasies of Wrigley’s corner outfield in left. His UZR/150 hasn’t been better than -30 in the outfield since 2008 (and it was -28.9 that year). That’s insanely consistently bad, in case you needed context. Hit it to left tonight, boys.

Think Samardzija is going to be jacked up to face Abreu? My money is on Samardzija, by the way.

Game Info

Chicago White Sox (15-17) at Chicago Cubs (11-18), 7:05 CT on CSN, WCIU (Sox).

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

Jose Quintana (4.00 ERA, 3.55 FIP, 3.33 xFIP; 3.56 K/BB)

versus

Jeff Samardzija (1.98 ERA, 3.28 FIP, 3.72 xFIP; 2.38 K/BB)

Chicago White Sox Lineup

1. Alejandro De Aza, CF

2. Gordon Beckham, 2B

3. Jose Abreu, 1B

4. Adam Dunn, LF

5. Dayan Viciedo, RF

6. Alexei Ramirez, SS

7. Tyler Flowers, C

8. Marcus Semien, 3B

9. Jose Quintana, P

Chicago Cubs Lineup

1. Emilio Bonifacio, CF

2. Junior Lake, LF

3. Anthony Rizzo, 1B

4. Starlin Castro, SS

5. Welington Castillo, C

6. Nate Schierholtz, RF

7. Mike Olt, 3B

8. Darwin Barney, 2B

9. Jeff Samardzija, P

  • ssckelley

    No point in having replay if they don’t have the gots to over turn that! His toe was clearly off the bag.

    • ssckelley

      Gots= guts

  • Beast Mode

    I want there umps if I’m in a murder trial.

    • Soda Popinski

      I want *them there* umps…

      • Soda Popinski

        :D

        • Beast Mode

          Thx for the correction but I was going for these umps. Lol

          • Beast Mode

            Well, the good news is Mike Olt will have a long career as an umpire after he flames out.

      • Funn Dave

        hahaha

  • willis

    I’m not sure how they call him out there? The foot clearly came off the bag. Horse shit call. Hopefully the pen can hold it down in the 10th.

  • JasonP

    Through 9 innings: 1 hit, 3 walks and zero runs by guys who weren’t the starting pitcher.

    That’s a bit depressing.

    • Soda Popinski

      You know, what’s depressing is that we’re watching every bit of this. What do you say we all do something productive in the community until this rebuild is over? Maybe mentor some children, help the elderly or run a soup kitchen…

    • nakedman1664

      I know the Cubs aren’t the best team out there…but this kind of game happens to even the best of teams. At the very best….Shark did a damn fine job himself.

  • Serious Cubs Fan

    Anyway possible Samardzija signs a long-term extension? I’m really starting to believe is on of the top #2 pitchers in the league

  • Beast Mode

    Alright come on bullpen.

  • ssckelley

    The camera angle that clearly shows he was off the bag was the one on the first base.

  • Beast Mode

    Man, Ramirez has looked very sharp.

    • JasonP

      Yeah, it’s really frustrating to have watch these guys who are meaningless prospects acquired in trades that will never be able to help the major league team win any games at any point in this decade.

  • 70’s Cub

    Thanks for pulling Lake out so we could get a nobody his first AB bottom 9th in a tied game. This is hard to watch!

    • willis

      Yes, that was a bad move. I surely don’t get it.

  • nakedman1664

    That’s the first time I have seen Ramirez pitch this season.

    Damn.

    • Serious Cubs Fan

      I’d still rather keep trying to develop Ramirez as a starter

      • JasonP

        Shark spent his first full ML season coming out of the pen.

        Grimm got splattered last year in Texas when they stuck him in the rotation too early due to injuries.

        There are plenty of examples of guys pitching in relief then moving on to be starters.

        • Serious Cubs Fan

          Very true. Good point

        • nakedman1664

          It goes both ways, really.

  • lnfihDeL

    Ramirez is nasty.

  • willis

    Ramirez only threw 10 pitches that inning. If Valbuena gets an out here let that kid go back out there. He’s been throwing nasty shit since he’s been up.

  • cubsfan08

    Wesley Wright has thrown a simulated game in the pen the past 2 nights. He should be unavailable for tomorrows game…

  • WilliamGlass721

    Neil Ramirez is so sadistic! :-)

  • Beast Mode

    Now that Veras is gone the pen looks like we thought it would be at the beginning of the season.

  • Beast Mode

    Oh and BTW if RR pulls our best hitter out of a tied game like Ventura did Abreu I would be pissed.

  • JasonP

    Wow, Len almost had the call of the year there.

    • nakedman1664

      Damn wind.

  • Jon

    I hate to sound line an old man, but Coughlan seriously needs to button up his jersey

    • JasonP

      He might catch a cold.

  • Jason P

    I’ve gotta say, I’m glad we’re past the point where we have guys like Scott Downs in our pen.

    • JasonP

      You don’t miss Shawn Camp?

      • ssckelley

        Remember Henry Rodriguez from last year? He has a 12.7 walk rate and a 18.2 SO rate so far in the minors in 16.1 innings.

    • ssckelley

      Actually I could not resist looking up Downs career since he was a Cub, he has had a pretty nice career pitching out of the bullpen.

  • nakedman1664

    I hate this decision. I really have to go to bed for work in the morning….but I don’t want to miss the end.

  • Jason P

    Ugh

  • Jon

    Double turds

  • Karl Groucho

    Should have left Smardja in longer amirite

    • ssckelley

      No but I might have stuck with Wright in this inning.

      • willis

        Probably the right call there. Grimm has been flirting with (and finding) disaster lately.

        • ssckelley

          Not even that, I have a hard time blowing through pitchers like that playing match ups in the 12th inning. I know we got a larger than normal bullpen but why blow through them, especially for just 1 hitter?

  • willis

    Shit. Another gem by Shark that will result in a loss. Grimm has been looking very ordinary lately. Was awful Friday, ok last night, now having a rough go tonight.

  • Beast Mode

    Throw an effinn strike.

  • Karl Groucho

    Facepalm, an HBP to load the bases and walking a guy in.

  • JasonP

    Didn’t get close to the zone on 2-1 or 3-1.

    Grimm having a rough go of it.

  • renegade4196

    Grimm looks like fucking trash tonight. Better off leaving in Wright. Renteria loses all function when it gets to the late innings.

  • Beast Mode

    I would have stuck with wright.

    • Beast Mode

      I know it sounds like Monday morning qb, but as was stated earlier. You don’t always know what your getting out of the pen. If someone is throwing strikes in the 12 th. You keep him in.

  • willis

    Complete meltdown now by Grimm. Game over. Thanks for the efforts, Shark.

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