The Cubs blew a late lead in their first game back after the break yesterday, but they did manage to fight back for a fairly memorable win. Let’s keep the good times rolling today, shall we?
Chicago Cubs Lineup:
- Kyle Schwarber, LF
- Javy Baez, SS
- Kris Bryant, 3B
- Anthony Rizzo, 1B
- Willson Contreras, C
- Jason Heyward, RF
- Addison Russell, 2B
- Albert Almora Jr., CF
- Jon Lester, P
Later today, the Cubs are facing right-hander Jordan Lyles, who’s got some fairly extreme splits this season in favor of left-handed hitters:
Lefties: .293/.374/.552 (.385 wOBA)
Righties: .214/.269/.381 (.274 wOBA)
Which is a shame, because the Cubs swapped out two switch-hitters from yesterday’s lineup (Robel Garcia and Victor Caratini) for two righties today (Addison Russell and Willson Contreras). Now, obviously, you’re fine with Contreras getting back in there (no matter the pitcher’s splits) and his rest yesterday – with no All-Star break rest for him – was the right call. But I can’t really say the same for Russell.
I suppose his history against Lyles (3-4, HR) matters to an extent – and it’s not like you’re going to start Descalso today, who’s been struggling in general and hasn’t been great against Lyles lifetime – but I thought we were going to roll with Garcia everyday out of the gate to see what he can do … not just continue rotating in 15 players at second base. Remember, Garcia can bat left handed and Lyles is crushed by lefties.
I guess aligning the best infield defense behind Jon Lester is a fine excuse, but it’s not like he gets a ton of ground balls or something. Shrug. Kris Bryant, Albert Almora Jr. and Contreras homered off him last time. Maybe the Cubs will have enough offense anyway.
And, as usual, we’ll have your full Pre-Gamin’ post closer to game time (1:20 CT).