[Brett: The tarp is currently on the field pre-game, and the forecast includes potential periods of thunderstorms throughout the afternoon. The biggest thing is that you just don’t want to see Jake Arrieta stopped and started. OK. On to you, Michael.]
Happy Jake Arrieta Day! – the holiday that comes once every five days or so. I love Jake Arrieta Day because it strikes fear into the hearts and minds of my enemies …
… and because the Cubs have done quite well on Jake Arrieta Days over the past two years.
Jake Arrieta draws the start in today’s series showdown against the St. Louis Cardinals. The Cubs took the first series of the year, but a loss today would tie the season record at three wins and losses apiece. Arrieta will pitch to Miguel Montero today, who has been in and out of the lineup as he works his back from some back soreness.
Montero, a lefty, is joined by five other left-handed (or switch) hitters in today’s Cubs lineup, because the opposing starter, Carlos Martinez, has struggled mightily against lefties throughout his career and into this season especially. That means no Javy Baez and no Jorge Soler today, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see either of them get in the game late.
It does mean that we get to see Tommy La Stella, though, in his first start since May 18. But despite a hot start to the season, La Stella has actually had a bit of a cold streak lately (3-18, BB, HBP in his last 20 PAs). Martinez could be a very good matchup for him, though, and today’s as good a day as any to break back out.
The Cubs have lost each of their last two series (and three out of the last four), so, uh, let’s see a win today, yes?
Chicago Cubs (30-14) at St. Louis Cardinals (24-22), 12:45 CT on ABC-7, 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?
Cubs: Jake Arrieta (R): 1.29 ERA, 2.48 FIP; 3.02 xFIP; 3.15 K/BB
Cardinals: Carlos Martinez (R): 3.56 ERA, 4.22 FIP, 4.30 xFIP; 2.06 K/BB
St. Louis Cardinals Lineup
1. Kolton Wong, 2B
2. Aledmys Diaz, SS
3. Matt Holliday, LF
4. Stephen Piscotty, RF
5. Matt Adams, 1B
6. Yadier Molina, C
7. Randal Grichuk, CF
8. Ruben Tejada, 3B
9. Carlos Martinez, P
Chicago Cubs Lineup
1. Dexter Fowler, CF
2. Jason Heyward, RF
3. Kris Bryant, LF
4. Anthony Rizzo, 1B
5. Ben Zobrist, 2B
6. Tommy La Stella, 3B
7. Miguel Montero, C
8. Addison Russell, SS
9. Jake Arrieta, P