After nearly blowing the game in the eighth inning yesterday, the Cubs came out on top and beat the Blue Jays in the first of what’ll ultimately be a three-game set.
Which means if they win today, they’ll guarantee a series victory, which also means we can have a nice fun Saturday night and a carefree Sunday (well, until Game of Thrones that is – then it’s all stress and excitement). Wouldn’t that be something?
And all they have to do today is beat the 28-year-old right-hander and journeyman Nick Tepesch. Tepesch was traded from the Twins to the Blue Jays at this year’s trade deadline for cash considerations. Since then, he’s made two starts for the Jays, the first a bad one, the second a good one:
Vs. Yankees: 4.1 IP, 8H, 5ER, 1BB, 4K
Vs. Rays: 6.0 IP, 4H, 1ER, 3BB, 0Ks
So, the difference between the 5ER performance against the Yankees and the 1ER outing against the Rays was the three homers allowed in the former contest. But, with three walks and no strikeouts in his “good” start, I think you can say he was just very lucky to have a 9.1% HR/FB ratio. Hopefully, the Cubs can even that right out for him.
Starting for the Cubs (and my fantasy team) today is Jose Quintana. After a blowup in Arizona, wherein the D-Backs tagged him for six earned runs in 5.0 innings, Quintana allowed just four earned runs in his next 11.0 innings (over two starts). He was a little wild in the last one (4 walks), but he allowed just four hits and no homers and I’m fully expecting a good start today.
On paper, the Cubs have the advantage. Let’s see if they use it and win.
Chicago Cubs (64-57) at Toronto Blue Jays (59-63) – 1:20 CT on ABC-7, 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: Jose Quintana (L): 4.33 ERA, 4.10 FIP, 4.06 xFIP; 2.88 K/BB
Blue Jays: Nick Tepesch (R): 5.25 ERA, 9.56 FIP, 7.56 xFIP; 1.00 K/BB
Toronto Blue Jays*:
- Jose Bautista, RF
- Josh Donaldson, 3B
- Justin Smoak, 1B
- Steve Pearce, LF
- Miguel Montero, C
- Kevin Pillar, CF
- Goins, SS
- Darwin Barney, 2B
- Nick Tepesch, P
* Sorry, but this yesterday’s Blue Jays lineup. I had to take off before they released their batting order, though I’m sure someone can post it in the comments when it comes out.
Chicago Cubs Lineup:
- Jon Jay, CF
- Kyle Schwarber, LF
- Kris Bryant, 3B
- Anthony Rizzo, 1B
- Ian Happ, 2B
- Alex Avila, C
- Jason Heyward, RF
- Javy Baez, SS
- Jose Quintana, P