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san diego padres logo featureFrom one bottom-dwelling NL West team to another (and yet both the Diamondbacks and Padres are *ahead* of the Rockies – that division is bad, dude). The Cubs welcome the San Diego Padres to Wrigley Field as we barrel toward the non-waiver Trade Deadline. Being that the Padres are sellers like the Cubs, Hug Watch will be in full effect for this series.

We’re Going Streaking

The Cubs were swept by the Diamondbacks in Arizona, knocking them down to 17 games below .500, and the second worst record in the NL. The Cubs are ahead of only the Rangers and Rockies, who currently sport matching 40-59 records, two losses worse than the Cubs.

The Padres just took two of three from the Mets, but have dropped every other series they’ve played in July. A clash of titans, this is not.

Game Times and Broadcasts

  • Tuesday, July 22 at 7:05 CT on CSN+.
  • Wednesday, July 23 at 7:05 CT on CSN.
  • Thursday, July 24 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: Kyle Hendricks (6.00 ERA, 4.98 FIP; 2.33 K/BB), Tsuyoshi Wada (0.00 ERA, 2.54 FIP; 3.00 K/BB), Edwin Jackson (5.61 ERA, 4.27 FIP; 2.04 K/BB)

Lineup:

  1. Chris Coghlan, LF
  2. Arismendy Alcantara, 2B (sometimes CF)
  3. Anthony Rizzo, 1B
  4. Starlin Castro, SS
  5. Luis Valbuena, 3B
  6. Ryan Sweeney/Nate Schierholtz, RF
  7. Justin Ruggiano/Ryan Sweeney, CF
  8. Welington Castillo, C
  9. Pitcher

Padres

Starters: Eric Stults (4.98 ERA, 5.23 FIP; 2.57 K/BB), Ian Kennedy (3.62 ERA, 2.98 FIP; 3.70 K/BB), Tyson Ross (2.70 ERA, 3.26 FIP; 2.87 K/BB)

Lineup:

  1. Alexei Amarista, SS
  2. Chase Headley, 3B
  3. Seth Smith, RF
  4. Carlos Quentin, LF
  5. Yasmani Grandal, C
  6. Will Venable, CF
  7. Chris Nelson, 2B
  8. Jake Goebbert, 1B
  9. Pitcher

Hot or Not and Whom to Watch

As I’ve said before, I am not of the mind that the Cubs have to trade Edwin Jackson at all costs. But, heading up into the deadline, it would be nice if Jackson flashed some of the brilliance we know is in there, just in case it helps give the Cubs options.

Each of Kyle Hendricks and Tsuyoshi Wada gets his second big league start in this series, and his first at Wrigley Field. I think that’s pretty neat.

Anthony Rizzo in July: .292/.361/.600. Those numbers are awesome, but it’s funny – they’re not much better than his overall numbers this year. That’s how good he’s been.

On the Padres, you’ve got to figure that other teams will be closely eyeing Ian Kennedy and Joaquin Benoit, in particular.

Offensively, it is not an exaggeration to say that the Padres have been Seth Smith and then nothing else this year. Smith’s wRC+ is a lofty 154 … and not a single other Padre hitter with more than 50 plate appearances is above 91. That’s insane.

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