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us cellular fieldWulp. Here we go. The Cubs can tonight settle for an ugly series loss by avoiding an OMGLOL sweep by the White Sox in the Crosstown Cup. And I know that that’s what a sweep would entail, because the Cubs did it to the White Sox last year.

I’ll be at tonight’s game, documenting what it’s like for a Cubs fan to take in a Cubs/Sox game at U.S. Cellular Field, which could be particularly interesting in light of the possible sweep. Or it could be intensely boring, given the fact that it’s early May, and these are not likely contenders.

Jake Arrieta makes his second start since returning to the rotation, and it’s going to be hard to top his first outing, all things considered. That one featured 5.1 dominant innings against the Cardinals. I suppose he could top it tonight by going 6 or 7 innings, but, let’s keep in mind that he’s coming off a shoulder issue. There’s no shame in laying off the throttle for a little while.

The Cubs’ lineup features Ryan Kalish subbing into the leadoff spot for Emilio Bonifacio, who gets the night off. It’s a mish-mash of other players against fill-in starter Scott Carroll, who figures to play the part of Hector Noesi tonight. (To Carroll’s credit, the 29-year-old rookie has had back-to-back really nice starts for the White Sox.)

Game Info

Chicago Cubs (11-20) at Chicago White Sox (18-17), 7:10 CT on WGN.

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

Scott Carroll (0.68 ERA, 3.78 FIP, 5.11 xFIP; 1.00 K/BB)

versus

Jake Arrieta (0.00 ERA, 1.60 FIP, 2.56 xFIP; 3.50 K/BB)

Chicago White Sox Lineup

1. Gordon Beckham, 2B

2. Conor Gillespie, 3B

3. Jose Abreu, 1B

4. Adam Dunn, DH

5. Dayan Viciedo, LF

6. Alexei Ramirez, SS

7. Alejandro De Aza, CF

8. Moises Sierra, RF

9. Tyler Flowers, C

Chicago Cubs Lineup

1. Ryan Kalish, CF

2. Luis Valbuena, 2B

3. Anthony Rizzo, 1B

4. Starlin Castro, SS

5. Nate Schierholtz, RF

6. Welington Castillo, C

7. Chris Coghlan, DH

8. Mike Olt, 3B

9. Junior Lake, LF

  • Edwin

    I suppose asking for a no hitter is too much?

  • JM

    I just hate everything about the White Sox. From there stupid tv announcer, dumb named players and coaches (Nardi? Really?), to their obnoxious fans. Heard good things about the park, but can’t bring myself to go.

  • Rebuilding

    I definitely see the advantages of having the DH in your league – Chris Coughlan vs. Adam Dunn – doesn’t seem fair

    • JM

      I understand your point, but I can’t believe the number of people that view Dunn as such a terrific player when he is so one dimensional. And for a guys that has led the league in strikeouts four times, and is on pace for another 150-170 this year.

      • Rebuilding

        You mean the guy who has 445 career HRs, a career 367 OBP and 862 OPS? Yeah, no I don’t think he’s overrated. Underrated, for the reasons you give

        • Rebuilding

          Dunn has hit over 32 HRs in 10 different seasons. He’s also walked over 100 times in 8 different seasons. A strikeout still only counts as 1 out

          • candyland07

            Dunn is one player a id rather see strike out . then hit into a double play. OR he can do what Rizzo does best when men are on base WALK. OR strike out.

            • Rebuilding

              He’s about as close as you can get to a true 3 outcome player

              • Rebuilding

                People also forget Dunn is only 33. He has a chance to get to 600 HRs. His most similar players through age 33:

                Harmon Killebrew (872) *
                Jose Canseco (864)
                Jim Thome (858)
                Reggie Jackson (856) *
                Rocky Colavito (855)
                Andruw Jones (841)
                Dale Murphy (834)
                Boog Powell (822)
                Greg Luzinski (815)
                Mike Schmidt (811) *

                • Rebuilding

                  Check that…he turned 34 during the offseason. Point still stands

                • another JP

                  Any time I see the name Mike Schmidt in print it pisses me off. The Anti-Santo; a real puker.

                • Spriggs

                  Dale Murphy?? Nah!

                  • Rebuilding

                    Why not? Murphy led the league in strikeouts 3 times, walked a lot and hit a lot of HRs (for the time). The scores are based strictly on offense – obviously Murphy brought a lot more to the field

    • Jon

      Not every team in the NL has to resort to a Coughlan at DH

      • Brocktoon

        Few have to resort to Olt at 3B and Lake in LF either.

    • Darth Ivy

      This is the reason I went from being very anti DH to really very pro DH.

  • aa.

    Of all the weird lineups the Cubs have used this year, this is probably the weirdest.

    • another JP

      Just picture the players on the line-up card as deck chairs…

  • another JP

    Did Bonifacio call in “sick-of-losing” today?

    • Funn Dave

      haha, nice one.

  • candyland07

    Hmm Which team has the more powerful HR hitters ? Cause they will be flying out of the park if the wind is the same as it is now at game time.

  • Diehardthefirst

    Memo to Mgr Rick- read the last memo – Castro ahead of Rizzo- insanity is doing things over and over expecting etc

    • DarthHater

      Stupidity is repeating the same non-definition of insanity over and over …

    • Darth Ivy

      that’s the definition of persistence

  • SenorGato

    Speak of the muhfckin devil – Vanderbilt vs. Florida is on ESPNU tonight with Beede on the mound.

    • half_full_beer_mug

      Well actually it’s softball the baseball is on ESPN3, must have been a rain delay for the softball game.

  • Rebuilding

    By the way, thanks for getting me on to DraftStreet, Brett. The next time he posts a free contest you guys should try it out. It was well worth my time in April:

    Username Prizes Wins Cashed High Score
    Rebuilding $10,662 19 103 N/A

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Duuuuuuude! Success story!

      • Rebuilding

        Yeah, it’s fun. Lot’s of money to be made there – several guys over $100,000 last month. Just for perspective, that haul put me in 89th place for the month

        • another JP

          Congrats… nice job!

  • Darth Ivy

    Is it still too early to trade a highly ranked offseason pitcher, like Shelby Miller, who has bad deeper stats (FIP above 5, tons of walks and homers, average type BABIP) for a guy who was picked up as a free agent, like Jesse Chavez, who has really nice deeper stats?

    • Darth Ivy

      let me word that better: “a player who was ranked high in the offseason, like Shelby Miller at 88…”

  • SenorGato

    Why is it the public reaction to athletes’ salaries is always “wow they’re overpaid, lets yell at that” and not “holy fuck what happened to our unions?” Or something similar…

    • Jon

      Especially when that money is either going to said player, or rich aristocrat of an owner

  • nakedman1664

    Soler and Bryant both 2-2 tonight. Making for a nice 3 and 4 hitter early on, I might say.

  • another JP

    Time for irrational Soler hype- 2 for 2 and has just hit a 2-run double. 2-2 for Bryant; top four hitters for Smokies on base 6 times in 8 ABs thus far.

    • Kyle

      It’s fun to see the top four prospects move up and down within the top 4.

      • renegade4196

        It will be more fun to see them at Wrigley.
        But no, common sense isn’t a thing for the Cubs.

  • http://bleachernation.com woody

    Bryant has two singles in his first two at bats and Soler just doubled and brought in two runs.

    • SenorGato

      Justin Bryant

  • Medicos

    The NFL 2014 Draft is more interesting than watching the 2014 Cubs attempt to score runs!!!!!

  • peoriadude

    Schitholtz

    • peoriadude

      Then a single. Then a triple. So do I learn my lesson and not badmouth him any more, or do I continue making myself look stupid by badmouthing him in hopes he’ll get more hits?

  • ChiTownHero

    BRYANT 3-3 with a HR tonight!!!! Future is bright folks

  • Eternal Pessimist

    Bryant jacks one!!!

    • baldtaxguy

      Very deep shot. Looked effortless

      • Jon

        Coach #poorTomRicketts

    • http://bleachernation.com woody

      Put him on a plane to chicago!

  • http://bleachernation.com woody

    Cha ching! Bryant homers. Three for three!

  • Jon

    Pack his bags to Iowa

    • renegade4196

      *Chicago. Iowa would be a waste of time.

  • Rudy N

    Soler with a nice walk… Did not chase bad pitches. Yay, for disciplined power hitters!

  • Jon

    Thank God for the NFL draft and kris Bryant distracting me from this game tonight. I see the cubs are making another scrub look like Sandy Koufax

    • roz

      Someone take a shit in your cornflakes this morning? You seem to be particular angsty today.

      • Jon

        I hope I’m in a better mood after the Bears pick or I could be worse lol

    • ChiTownHero

      I care if the Cubs win or not in the first month of the season then I accept losing. I am at the point where I only care about the development of players at the major league level and in the minors. And I can’t wait till July/August for the call ups

    • Darth Ivy
  • SenorGato

    Beede was 93-98 in the first and showed off his ridiculous secondaries (that changeup is dirty).

    Didn’t command his fastball well in the first, this is his biggest flaw as a pitching prospect. He’s a guy you have to get early and he managed to limit the damage – I like that. He botched his own DP opportunity, but recovered quickly – made the adjustment (tried to stab with the glove, immediately went barehand when it didn’t work the first time) – and got the out at first.

    The seeds are there for great mechanics.

    • SenorGato

      Like I said, you have to get him early. Smooth 2nd inning – finished with his second K of the night with two sliders to the same spot. One a swinging strike, a failed check swing, and the other where the guy left the bat on his shoulders.

      Seeing college players on cable (well, right now ESPN 3 from my laptop) reminds me of how young these f’n guys are.

      • SenorGato

        Ooph – college defense is horrible but Vanderbilt had that double play. That kinda blows for pitch count, inning stress, and so on…Florida hasn’t really put a good swing on anything since the first, and the two hits were on meatball fastballs.

        • SenorGato

          Bases loaded after a walk, then he comes back and strikes out the next guy on a 1-2 changeup that seemed to moved all the way across the plate away from the LHH.
          That Florida hasn’t scored so far this inning surprised me.

          This guy’s changeup is filthy. These guys are just flailing wildly. They left the bases empty lol…some really nasty off speed pitches got him out of the inning.

          With Beede’s pitch count (he’s at 58 through 3) I’m hoping he can throw fastballs for strikes and milk a few more innings out of his pitch count tonight. Phenomenal job getting out of that inning against a high quality conference opponent.

  • roz

    The thought of Rizzo, Bryant, and Soler all in one lineup is making me giddy right now.

    • nakedman1664

      Almost there.

    • Darth Ivy

      it’ll be nice to have a high OBP in front of them all, too

  • Darth Ivy
  • http://bleachernation.com woody

    Veres in to pitch for the smokies. OMG

  • Funn Dave

    Bat flip walk. Aww, yeah.

  • http://bleachernation.com woody

    The Rizzo and Castro show!

    • nakedman1664

      I like this show. It’s my favorite. Next to Spongebob, of course.

  • Funn Dave

    Castro’s hair looks like it was cut by a Sox fan.

  • SenorGato

    Nice pick by the Bears – Fuller IMO was the best corner in the draft.

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