The Chicago Cubs have a shot at winning their sixth consecutive series tonight, while moving to a season-high 10 games above .500. Boy, would that be sweet.
And although they have two shots at winning this series (today and tomorrow), tonight’s opportunity against the less-experienced right-hander, Zack Godley, should be better than tomorrow’s matchup against a rejuvenated Zack Greinke.
With that said, Godley has put up a really solid 3.06 ERA through 14 starts this season, which would rank among the top ten in baseball, had he enough innings to qualify. And, unfortunately, his peripherals are even stronger than the results, thanks to a solid 26.2% strike out rate and .196 batting average against.
In addition to all of that, Godley has completely crushed his HR/FB ratio from 19.4% last season to a better than average 11.8% mark this year AND has managed to work a 57.8% ground ball rate. Put differently, batters rarely get the ball in the air against Godley and when they do, they rarely hit it out of the park. Joy.
Of course, the Diamondbacks will have a challenge of their own tonight, as Jake Arrieta takes the mound after posting a 3.20 ERA since all the way back on May 21.
And even if you’re not entirely convinced by his recent results, given the still-elevated FIP, might I point you to my post on Arrieta from earlier today. Therein, I discovered that Arrieta was among the league leaders in soft and hard contact this season, which helps explain why his results have been better than his peripherals.
Let’s see if he can keep it up while pitching to the Cubs newest catcher, Alex Avila, tonight. Game time is 7:05. Good luck, Cubs. Go get that W.
Chicago Cubs (57-48) at Arizona Diamondbacks (60-46) – 7:05 CT on CSN-C, 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: Jake Arrieta (R): 3.88 ERA, 4.00 FIP, 3.63 xFIP; 3.33 K/BB
D-Backs: Zack Godley (R): 4.36 ERA, 4.19 FIP, 3.94 xFIP; 3.11 K/BB
- David Peralta, LF
- A.J. Pollock, CF
- Jake Lamb, 3B
- Paul Goldschmidt, 1B
- J.D. Martinez, RF
- Daniel Descalso, 2B
- Chris Iannetta, C
- Jack Reinheimer, SS
- Zack Godley, P
Chicago Cubs Lineup:
- Ben Zobrist, 2B
- Kris Bryant, 3B
- Anthony Rizzo, 1B
- Kyle Schwarber, LF
- Alex Avila, C
- Addison Russell, SS
- Jason Heyward, RF
- Jon Jay, CF
- Jake Arrieta, P