I don’t think I can express how happy I was when the Cubs won yesterday’s game against the Marlins. If you can believe it – at this point … I’m guessing you can – the Cubs have started off 14 of their first 22 series off with a loss.
They’ve come back to win some of those series, sure, but I’m willing to bet constantly digging yourself out of a hole is pretty tiring. Plus, given that the Cubs won their last series, but lost the last game, it was nice to see an immediate bounce back and slightly less yo-yo-ing than we’re used to. Hopefully, they can keep up this momentum, because the four games they’re playing against the Marlins are going to be a heck of a lot more winnable than the four games they play in Washington starting on Monday.
In any case, John Lackey will take the hill tonight, after a really solid bounce back start against the Pirates (6.0 IP, 2H, 1ER, 3BB, 4Ks). He did allow a home run in that one, though, which marks his SEVENTH straight start with a homer (12 overall). That’s really going to have to stop if he hopes to have prolonged success.
Fortunately, although the Marlins have some really good hitters, they’re 20th in HRs this year and 22nd in ISO. Just get the ball on the ground, John.
Opposing Lackey and the Cubs is right-hander Jose Urena. Like I discussed in the lineup post, Urena doesn’t have much of a lefty/righty split for his career (.332 wOBA v. L, .338 wOBA v. R), but that’s not true for this season:
Lefties: .256 wOBA
Righties: .366 wOBA
He pitched against the Cubs back on June 7, and lasted just 5.0 innings while allowing three earned runs on three hits and three walks. Ian Happ hit a homer off him in that one, and given the pace at which he’s been crushing them, I wouldn’t be surprised to see another ball leave the park tonight.
A win tonight would ensure the Cubs at least a series split. So get after it, guys.
Chicago Cubs (37-35) at Miami Marlins (32-39) – 6:10 CT on WGN, 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 today.
Cubs: John Lackey (R): 4.98 ERA, 5.54 FIP, 4.36 xFIP; 2.96 K/BB
Marlins: Jose Urena (R): 3.64 ERA, 5.17 FIP, 5.58 xFIP; 1.71 K/BB
- Dee Gordon, 2B
- Giancarlo Stanton, RF
- Christian Yelich, CF
- Marcell Ozuna, LF
- Justin Bour, 1B
- Martin Prado, 3B
- J.T. Realmuto, C
- JT Riddle, SS
- Jose Urena, P
Chicago Cubs Lineup:
- Anthony Rizzo, 1B
- Kris Bryant, 3B
- Ian Happ, RF
- Addison Russell, SS
- Miguel Montero, C
- Javy Baez, 2B
- Albert Almora Jr., CF
- John Lackey, P
- Jon Jay, LF