The Cubs are going with a new look in Washington this afternoon, with one especially big change at the top.
Chicago Cubs Lineup:
- Anthony Rizzo, 1B
- Kris Bryant, RF
- Daniel Murphy, 2B
- Javy Baez, 3B
- Victor Caratini, C
- David Bote, LF
- Addison Russell, SS
- Mike Montgomery, P
- Ian Happ, CF
For their one-game makeup, Cubs manager Joe Maddon has certainly shuffled the deck. And with Kyle Schwarber in Chicago, Jason Heyward on the DL, and Ben Zobrist getting extra rest during this insane stretch of games (which is the right call, all things considered), the outfield is made up of Ian Happ in center, Kris Bryant in right, and David Bote in left for the first time in his big league career. Weird, right?
Because of Bote and Bryant’s presence in the outfield, there were vacancies at third (Javy Baez) and second (Daniel Murphy) base, which brings me to my next point: Murphy has moved down in the order. Clearly, after my groundbreaking analytical reporting earlier this morning, Joe Maddon has decided to shift Murphy down in the order to make room for … THE GREATEST LEADOFF HITTER OF ALL TIME, Anthony Rizzo.
Will it be enough to ignite the offense and keep the Brewers and arm’s length away? I sure hope so. With Willson Contreras also getting an understandable day off today and Addison Russell at short, this isn’t exactly the Cubs A-lineup at the moment, but it’ll have to do. If they don’t win this afternoon, the Brewers will move within a half-game of the division. And I’m just not ready for that.
As usual, we’ll have your full Pre-Gamin’ post closer to game time (3:05 CT).