pnc parkA win tonight does not salve the wounds of the last three weeks. Not on its own.

But it would certainly make me rest easier tonight.

It would also cost me fifty bucks, because that’s how much I’m giving to Make-A-Wish toward the BN Blogathon if the Cubs win tonight. Maybe that seems like a safe bet given the recent trends, but it’s one that I sure do want to lose.

Jon Lester will look to rebound from the worst start of his career, and he’ll have Willson Contreras behind the plate, since David Ross is on the concussion DL. It’ll be very interesting to see how Contreras handles the veteran lefty, and how they work together overall. It sure is nice to have Contreras’s bat in the lineup, though.

Opposing Lester is rookie Chad Kuhl, who pitched solidly but unspectacularly at AAA this year before being called upon to fill in for the beleaguered Pirates rotation. Through two starts, he’s been only so-so overall. He’s a command/control guy, who won’t walk many and also won’t strike many out. If the Cubs want to beat him, they’re going to have to supply the damage. That would be kuhl.



 


Game Info

Chicago Cubs (52-35) at Pittsburgh Pirates Braves (45-42), 6:15 CT on FOX, 670 The Score.

Game Thread and Series Preview

Your game thread is down there in the comments, so have fun. But keep it “safe for work” type fun, all right?

The Series Preview lives hereThe Lineup Discussion lives here.

Starting Pitchers

Cubs: Jon Lester (L): 2.67 ERA, 3.70 FIP, 3.51 xFIP; 4.20 K/BB

versus

Pirates: Chad Kuhl (R): 4.09 ERA, 4.18 FIP, 5.75 xFIP; 1.75 K/BB



Pittsburgh Pirates Lineup:

1. Jordy Mercer, SS

2. David Freese, 1B

3. Andrew McCutchen, CF

4. Jung-Ho Kang, 3B

5. Starling Marte, LF

6. Sean Rodriguez, RF

7. Josh Harrison, 2B

8. Eric Fryer, C

9. Chad Kuhl, P

Chicago Cubs Lineup:

1. Tommy La Stella, 2B

2. Kris Bryant, LF

3. Anthony Rizzo, 1B

4. Ben Zobrist, RF

5. Willson Contreras, C

6. Jason Heyward, CF

7. Addison Russell, SS

8. Javy Baez, 3B

9. Jon Lester, P




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