Chicago Cubs Lineup: Facing Jack Flaherty Hasn't Been Great for the Cubs in the Past ... | Bleacher Nation

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Chicago Cubs Lineup: Facing Jack Flaherty Hasn’t Been Great for the Cubs in the Past …

Chicago Cubs

Later tonight, the Cubs will begin arguably the biggest game of their biggest series of the year. The Cubs best pitcher, Yu Darvish, will take on the Cardinals best pitcher, Jack Flaherty, before four more games are played over the weekend and into Monday. Win this first one and you’re setting yourself up to be happy by Tuesday morning. Lose it, and you have an extremely uphill battle the rest of the way. Here’s how David Ross will line ’em up for Game 1 of 5.

Chicago Cubs Lineup: 

1. Kyle Schwarber, LF
2. Kris Bryant, 3B
3. Anthony Rizzo, 1B
4. Javy Baez, SS
5. Jason Heyward, RF
6. Willson Contreras, DH
7. Victor Caratini, C
8. Cameron Maybin, CF
9. Jason Kipnis, 2B

Before we get too deeply into the lineup choices, let’s discuss Jack Flaherty. The Cardinals righty has been a lot tougher on right-handers this year, as expected, but lefties haven’t hit him all that well either. And indeed, for his career, he’s not exactly split neutral, but let’s just say batters of all types have had trouble facing him …

… Except for Anthony Rizzo: 9-18, 3HRs, 2B, 3 BBs, 2Ks.

But don’t get too excited, because the rest of the Cubs core has been absolutely owned by Flaherty.

Baez: 1-12, 3B, 1BB, 7Ks
2-18, 3BBs, 10Ks
Heyward: 1-16, 3BBs, 4Ks
Contreras: 4-19, HR, 0BB, 8Ks
Schwarber: 2-15, HR, 5BBs, 5Ks

That’s a combined 10-80 (.125 avg) with 12 walks and 34 strikeouts. Yikes.

As for the lineup, you’ll notice leadoff man Ian Happ is getting the night off after taking a ball off the eye yesterday. Let’s hope, for his sake and the Cubs, that this is just a one-night thing. Kyle Schwarber is leading off in his place and Cameron Maybin takes over center field. At the same time, Jason Heyward, who’s been the Cubs second best hitter this year, has moved up in the lineup, leapfrogging Willson Contreras, though I suspect that’s more about splitting up the righties than anything else.

Victor Caratini is catching Yu Darvish, as he does, and Jason Kipnis is your second baseman. As usual, we’ll have your full Pre-Gamin’ post closer to game time (7:15 CT).

Author: Michael Cerami

Michael Cerami covers the Chicago Cubs, Bears, and Bulls at Bleacher Nation. You can find him on Twitter @Michael_Cerami