I can’t say much more about last night’s #CubsSocial Media night that Brett didn’t already cover, but I will reiterate that it was a ton of fun and great to meet everyone that I did. Can’t wait for next year’s event.
Just as we went into the weekend’s Brewers series with the singular goal of not getting swept (which didn’t quite work out), the goal this week was to simply win the series against the Mets. After homering their way to victory last night, the Cubs have a chance to do just that tonight.
As we explored earlier, the lineup is identical to last night’s group (hopefully, we get the same sort of performances out of Kyle Schwarber and Willson Contreras), with the lone exception of the pitcher, Jon Lester.
Lester is taking the ball for the third time since returning from the disabled list, and so far it’s been a mixed bag. His first start back came against the Braves, who unleashed three homers on Lester, forcing him out of the game with four earned runs through 5.0 innings. His second start back, however, Lester lasted 6.0 innings, while allowing just one earned run.
He did give up five hits and four walks in that one though, so let’s hope for some better command against the Mets tonight.
Starting opposite Lester is the ghost of Matt Harvey (5.82 ERA, -0.4 fWAR). I joke, of course, because it’s always at least a little scary to face former aces. While his season might look terrible overall, seven of his 15 starts featured two or fewer earned runs (and two more featured just three earned runs).
But still, his tiny 16.7% strikeout rate and huge 10.4% walk rate are far too close together, and his .261 batting average against doesn’t inspire much confidence either. He’s also struggled to keep the ball on the ground a bit this year and is allowing slightly more hard contact than average.
On paper, the Cubs should have the advantage in this matchup, but of course, baseball isn’t played on paper. So let’s watch the game and see what happens.
Chicago Cubs (78-66) at New York Mets (63-81) – 7:05 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: Jon Lester (L): 4.35 ERA, 3.98 FIP, 3.72 xFIP; 3.22 K/BB
New York Mets: Matt Harvey (R): 5.82 ERA, 6.10 FIP, 5.14 xFIP; 1.61 K/BB
New York Mets:
- Jose Reyes, 2B
- Nori Aoki, LF
- Asdrubal Cabrera, 3B
- Kevin Plawecki, C
- Juan Lagares, CF
- Amed Rosario, SS
- Travis Taijeron, RF
- Matt Reynolds, 1B
- Matt Harvey, P
Chicago Cubs Lineup:
- Ben Zobrist, 2B
- Kris Bryant, 3B
- Anthony Rizzo, 1B
- Willson Contreras, C
- Ian Happ, CF
- Kyle Schwarber, LF
- Jason Heyward, RF
- Javy Baez, SS
- Jose Quintana, P