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citi field metsThe Cubs wrap up their visit to New York with a little morning baseball. They’ve got a chance to walk away with a series split, and their strikeout totals have been dipping by about one per game for a few now. So … eight Ks today, maybe?

On the bump for the Cubs, Kyle Hendricks, who is rocking a five-game quality start streak. He is quick, efficient, mixes four pitches, and doesn’t walk anyone. That’s a time-tested back-of-the-rotation skill set (I mean that as a compliment), but it will occasionally lead to a slapping. One of these days it’s coming, and I’m warning you in advance not to overreact in either direction to the rest of the year for Hendricks. He’s shown enough to merit strong consideration for the back of the rotation next year. Again: a compliment.

Matt Szczur, who appeared late in yesterday’s game, will make his first start for the Cubs, in left field. It should be a great experience for him, as he’ll probably have quite a few familiar faces in the stands.

Today’s sad face: Bartolo Colon batting is not going to happen. He was just scratched, and the Cubs will instead face Carlos Torres. Not sure if there’s an injury issue, or if the Mets have managed to pull off a waiver deal on Colon. Obviously the former is far more likely.

Game Info

Chicago Cubs (53-70) at New York Mets (59-66), 11:10 CT on CSN

Game Thread and Series Preview

Game threads now live here in the comments – and with Disqus, they should be even more enjoyable.

The Series Preview lives here.

Starting Pitchers

Kyle Hendricks (1.73 ERA, 3.30 FIP, 3.67 xFIP; 2.89 K/BB)

versus

Carlos Torres (3.68 ERA, 4.01 FIP, 3.39 xFIP; 2.81 K/BB)

New York Mets Lineup

1. Curtis Granderson, RF

2. Daniel Murphy, 2B

3. David Wright, 3B

4. Lucas Duda, 1B

5. Travis d’Arnaud, C

6. Matt den Dekker, LF

7. Juan Lagares, CF

8. Wilmer Flores, SS

9. Carlos Torres, P

Chicago Cubs Lineup

1. Arismendy Alcantara, CF

2. Javier Baez, 2B

3. Anthony Rizzo, 1B

4. Starlin Castro, SS

5. Luis Valbuena, 3B

6. Justin Ruggiano, RF

7. Welington Castillo, C

8. Matt Szczur, LF

9. Kyle Hendricks, P

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