The Cubs head off to New York where every story from the local press there will be about the Cubs giving Starlin Castro to the Mets after the season for Jonathan Niese and a slice of New York style pizza.
We’re Going Streaking
The Cubs had a chance to take 3 of 4 from the Brewers, but couldn’t make it happen thanks to some continued strikeout woes.
The Mets are eight games under .500 after a sweep by the Nationals. They took their swing this year, but the future looks bright for the Mets, much in the same way it does for the Cubs: great young talent on the way (mostly on the pitching side), better financial situation on the horizon after some legacy problems are cleared up.
Game Times and Broadcasts
- Friday, August 15 at 6:10 CT on WGN.
- Saturday, August 16 at 6:10 CT on WGN.
- Sunday, August 17 at 12:10 CT on CSN.
- Monday, August 18 at 11:10 CT on CSN.
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.
Starters: Travis Wood (4.86 ERA, 4.14 FIP; 1.89 K/BB), Dan Straily (Cubs debut), Jake Arrieta (2.77 ERA, 2.37 FIP; 3.90 K/BB), Kyle Hendricks (1.73 ERA, 3.30 FIP; 2.89 K/BB)
- Chris Coghlan, LF
- Javier Baez, 2B
- Anthony Rizzo, 1B
- Starlin Castro, SS
- Luis Valbuena, 3B
- Arismendy Alcantara, CF
- Ryan Sweeney/Justin Ruggiano, RF
- Welington Castillo, C
Starters: Zack Wheeler (3.53 ERA, 3.59 FIP; 2.33 K/BB), Jonathan Niese (3.46 ERA, 3.84 FIP; 2.59 K/BB), Rafael Montero (6.12 ERA, 7.17 FIP; 1.62 K/BB), Bartolo Colon (3.85 ERA, 3.40 FIP; 5.95 K/BB)
- Curtis Granderson, RF
- Daniel Murphy, 2B
- David Wright, 3B
- Lucas Duda, 1B
- Travis d’Arnaud, C
- Matt den Dekker, LF
- Juan Lagares, CF
- Wilmer Flores, SS
Hot or Not and Whom to Watch
Be prepared for everything that Starlin Castro does to be analyzed and exaggerated under the microscope by the New York media. He’s riding a 14-game hitting streak, by the way, and .415/.436/.528 in August.
Chris Coghlan is through 270 plate appearances this year, and his line is still an impressive .286/.360/.475.
Dan Straily’s debut tomorrow will be fun to watch. Keep an eye on the radar gun – Straily relies heavily on his four-seam fastball, and if it’s not at least in the low-90s, he’ll struggle (as he did early this year).
We will be treated to the magic that is Bartolo Colon at bat. (Well, unless the Cubs knock him out before his first at bat comes up. Don’t do that Cubs.)
I know he would have dominated the Cubs, but I miss watching Matt Harvey pitch. That guy was all kinds of special. Hopefully he comes back strong from the TJS next year and impresses once again.
Daniel Murphy (122 wRC+) and Lucas Duda (136 wRC+) are your unlikely offensive leaders for the Mets, by quite a wide margin, too. This is not a strong offensive club.