The Chicago Cubs are returning home tonight to raise their World Series banner at Wrigley Field for the first time ever … if the rain holds up, that is.

This’ll be my first Cubs game of the year (Luis, Brett, and I will all be out in right field), and I’d love for it to be a not wet and freezing one, if at all possible. If the game is on and you find yourself in the bleachers, though, come say hi! That’s where we’ll be.

As for the matchup …

The Cubs are sending Jon Lester to the mound with his personal catcher, Willson Contreras, and increasingly personal second baseman, Javy Baez. In fact, this is the same lineup the Cubs ran out there on Opening Night, with the one notable difference that Lester is batting ninth, instead of eighth. We’ll see if that’s a new, permanent change or more of a one-time thing in the coming weeks.

Lester’s final line wasn’t terrible in his Opening Day start, but I’m sure he’d have preferred to go longer than then 5.0 innings he lasted (though the one earned run, two walks, and seven Ks would be welcomed again). The Dodgers have struggled with lefties a lot in the recent past, so he should be well set-up for success.


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Opposing Lester and the Cubs is Dodgers’ lefty Alex Wood. Unlike the Dodgers, however, the Cubs have handled lefties with ease both last and this season. Their .347 wOBA against LHP in 2016 was good for second place in baseball (just a tick under the .348 wOBA put up by the Diamondbacks), and their .505 wOBA this year is good for first place (minimum 15 PAs) throughout both leagues.

Please, rain, let the Cubs get this one in. I need my live-action Cubs’ baseball fix, and I need it tonight.

Game Info

Chicago Cubs (4-2) at Los Angeles Dodgers (4-3) – 7:05 on ESPN, 670 The Score

Game Thread and Series Preview

Your game thread is down in the comments, so let’s have some good, clean (safe-for-work) fun this evening.

The Series Preview lives hereThe Lineup Discussion lives here.

Starting Pitchers

Cubs: Jon Lester (L): 2.44 ERA, 3.41 FIP, 3.47 xFIP; 3.79 K/BB (2016)

versus

Dodgers: Alex Wood (L): 3.73 ERA, 3.18 FIP, 3.29 xFIP; 3.30 K/BB (2016)


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Los Angeles Dodgers Lineup:

  1. Andrew Toles, LF
  2. Corey Seager, SS
  3. Justin Turner, 3B
  4. Adrian Gonzalez, 1B
  5. Logan Forsythe, 2B
  6. Joc Pederson, CF
  7. Yasmani Grandal, C
  8. Yasiel Puig, RF
  9. Alex Wood, P

Chicago Cubs Lineup:

  1. Kyle Schwarber, LF
  2. Kris Bryant, 3B
  3. Anthony Rizzo, 1B
  4. Ben Zobrist, RF
  5. Addison Russell, SS
  6. Willson Contreras, C
  7. Jason Heyward, CF
  8. Javy Baez, 2B
  9. Jon Lester, P

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