The Cubs can clinch the NL Central tonight. Is this the crew to do it?
Chicago Cubs Lineup v. Milwaukee Brewers (Jimmy Nelson):
- Dexter Fowler, CF
- Kris Bryant, 3B
- Anthony Rizzo, 1B
- Ben Zobrist, 2B
- Addison Russell, SS
- Jorge Soler, LF
- Jason Heyward, RF
- Miguel Montero, C
- Mike Montgomery, P
Jimmy Nelson is split-neutral for the year, but, over his career, lefties have handled him much better than righties. The Cubs get an extra lefty in there in the form of Miguel Montero, but we haven’t seen much of Chris Coghlan or Tommy La Stella lately. Instead, Jorge Soler draws another start in left. Given how good he’s been post-hamstring-injury, it’s hard to argue.
As for Montero, he’ll get another start at catcher, which is also an increasingly common thing. There was a while there when Willson Contreras was catcher almost every day when Jon Lester wasn’t pitching, but I wonder if the grind of a very long season for a very young player (of whom a whole lot has been asked this year) is taking its toll. Either way, the Cubs are doing well to give him some rest in advance of the playoffs. At his best, Contreras still represents the Cubs’ most impactful catcher overall. In the meantime, it’s not so bad to turn to Montero, who has looked good both at the plate and behind the plate recently.
We’ll have more for you in a full Pre-Gamin’ closer to game time.