The Chicago Cubs are mired in a four-game losing streak and look to avoid a three-game sweep at the hands of the villainous St. Louis Cardinals.
In an attempt to shake things up and get certain players going, Joe Maddon has employed a new look at the top of the order:
- Willson Contreras, C
- Kyle Schwarber, LF
- Kris Bryant, 3B
- Anthony Rizzo, 1B
- Addison Russell, SS
- Ian Happ, CF
- Javy Baez, 2B
- Jason Heyward, RF
- Jon Lester, P
With Ben Zobrist sitting, it’s a return to the top of the order for Contreras, who had a short-lived stint as the team’s lead-off man in 2017. If you’ll recall, he even delivered a lead-off dinger. Hitting in a different spot in the order will hopefully spark the slumping Contreras, who is hitting .152 with a .303 slugging percentage in his last 10 games.
That’s not the only shakeup, with Kyle Schwarber up in the two-hole. Whatever at this point, right? It gives the Cubs a R-L-R-L-R-L-R-L top eight in the lineup.
Ian Happ gets a rare start in center field, but has started to hit the ball better lately. Happ is hitting .286 with a .343 wOBA in 22 plate appearances across the last 10 games. But he has also struck out in an alarmingly high 50% of his plate appearances.
As usual, we’ll have more in the Pre-Gamin’ closer to game time (7:07 pm CT).
Brett Taylor contributed to this post, and then also reminds you that there’s a big sale going on today at Fanatics:
— Bleacher Nation (@BleacherNation) May 6, 2018