Things got off to a rocky start for the Cubs in 2019, but there’s a new game tonight and a new lineup to dissect. Check it out.
Chicago Cubs Lineup:
- Albert Almora Jr., CF
- Kris Bryant, 3B
- Anthony Rizzo, 1B
- Javy Baez, SS
- Willson Contreras, C
- David Bote, 2B
- Jason Heyward, RF
- Kyle Hendricks, P
- Mark Zagunis, LF
The Cubs don’t have the benefit of a designated hitter tonight, and with the lefty Sean Newcomb on the mound, that means Kyle Schwarber is grabbing some bench. I don’t really love sitting Schwarber after an extremely hot series in Texas, even if there is a lefty on the mound, but I can’t help but wonder if Joe Maddon is really hoping to set him up for success as often as possible early on, before letting him go more frequently later in the season.
I disagree with that approach and think it’s wholly unnecessary, but I wouldn’t be surprised it that’s what we’re seeing.
The decision is made a little more frustrating when you consider that another lefty, Jason Heyward, is still in there and Ben Zobrist is not. And while I understand the lack of Zobrist tonight from a rest perspective – that’s going to force him out of lineups more often this year than it has in the past – I just can’t help but feel like this lineup is leaving too much potential offense on the bench.
And all of this can go triple considering Sean Newcomb’s split-neutral career – indeed, if anything he has reverse splits (.318 wOBA versus lefties, .313 wOBA versus righties) … which sure seems like the perfect time to get Schwarber some exposure, but … we’ll see.
As usual, we’ll have your full Pre-Gamin’ closer to game time (6:10 CT)