Series Preview: Braves v. Cubs, August 20 – August 23, 2015

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Series Preview: Braves v. Cubs, August 20 – August 23, 2015

Chicago Cubs

braves mascotThe Braves come to town for an extra-long weekend set, and here’s hoping they provide a reprieve.

We’re Going Streaking

The Cubs dropped both games in their series against the Tigers, and, since they lost the finale on the South Side before that, they’re riding a three-game losing streak.

The Braves are also riding a three-game losing streak, all of them coming in San Diego. Before that, they lost four of six, so it’s been an ugly stretch for the Braves. Keep going.

Game Times and Broadcasts

  • Thursday, August 20 at 7:05 CT on CSN.
  • Friday, August 21 at 3:05 CT on CSN, MLBN.
  • Saturday, August 22 at 3:05 CT on ABC-7.
  • Sunday, August 23 at 1:20 CT on WGN-9.

And, if you’re not in the blackout region, you can always watch on

Expected Starters and Lineups

These lineups are likely to be pretty close to what actually gets fielded, but you’ll want to check each day’s Pre-Gamin’ post for the actual lineup.


Starters: Jake Arrieta (2.39 ERA, 2.67 FIP; 3.98 K/BB), Kyle Hendricks (3.97 ERA, 3.53 FIP; 3.70 K/BB), Dan Haren (5.40 ERA, 7.17 FIP; 4.33 K/BB), Jason Hammel (3.37 ERA, 3.63 FIP; 4.68 K/BB)


  1. Dexter Fowler, CF
  2. Kyle Schwarber, LF
  3. Chris Coghlan, 2B
  4. Anthony Rizzo, 1B
  5. Kris Bryant, 3B
  6. Jorge Soler, RF
  7. Miguel Montero, C
  8. Pitcher
  9. Addison Russell, SS


Starters: Mike Foltynewicz (5.61 ERA, 5.00 FIP; 2.62 K/BB), Shelby Miller (2.43 ERA, 3.21 FIP; 2.46 K/BB), Williams Perez (4.34 ERA, 4.90 FIP; 1.24 K/BB), TBA


  1. Michael Bourn, LF
  2. Cameron Maybin, CF
  3. Freddie Freeman, 1B
  4. Nick Markakis, RF
  5. A.J. Pierzynski, C
  6. Adonis Garcia, 3B
  7. Jace Peterson, 2B
  8. Andrelton Simmons, SS
  9. Pitcher

Hot or Not and Whom to Watch


If the Cubs can get quality starts out of two of Kyle Hendricks, Jason Hammel, and Dan Haren in this series, I’ll be happy.

Since July 12, a Cubs batter has gone .325/.459/.564, showing huge power and walking more (19.6%) than he’s struck out (18.9%). Who is it? Dexter Fowler.

Unfortunately for the Cubs, Freddie Freeman (oblique) came back from the DL yesterday, just in time to be around for this series against the Cubs. When healthy, which he hasn’t been much this year, Freeman is easily the best hitter on the Braves, and he’s slashed .285/.350/.498 this year.

The last time the Cubs played the Braves, Kelly Johnson was manning first, and he killed it in that series. Johnson’s off to the Mets, so maybe there won’t be a noticeable difference after all.

Cameron Maybin, probably the next best hitter on the Braves most of this year, went ice cold right after that Cubs series in mid-July, but he’s blazing hot again: .391/.451/.652 in his last 12, with hits in all but one of those games.

The Braves are not the Tigers, by the way, so that’s something.

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Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.