Pre-Gamin’: Rays at Cubs (6:40 CT) – Lineups, Broadcast Info, Game Thread

A win tonight against the Rays would push the Cubs to three games over .500 for the first time this season. It would also extend their series-loss-less streak to open the year. Soooo…imo, a win sounds pretty good. Hbu?

We’ve already discussed the fact that the Rays are starting the game with an opener, so let’s turn our attention to the Cubs starter, Justin Steele.

Steele has gotten off to a solid start this season, allowing just 2 earned runs over his first 9.1 IP, with 9 strikeouts, 9 hits, and 3 walks. So far, he’s succeeded primarily on a barrage of weak contact on the ground, though he’s facing a Rays group tonight that’s carrying one of the 10-lowest groundball rates against LHP this season (though not with much hard contact). These are all still very small sample sizes, so I don’t think it’ll tell us too much, but I did find it worth at least a note!

One big difference for Steele/the Cubs tonight? He won’t have Keegan Thompson to bail him out. Thompson tossed 3.2 innings yesterday and will not be available against the Rays tonight or tomorrow. David Robertson also pitched in each of the last two games, so I wonder if we’ll see Mychael Givens get a shot to close if it comes to it. And maybe Rowan Wick in the 8th?

Anyway, I’m on your game coverage tonight. So see you on the twitters. Oh, also Wander Franco is back in the Rays lineup after sitting out with a hamstring injury yesterday. Go Cubs.

Game Info

Tampa Bay Rays (5-6) at Chicago Cubs (6-4) – Tuesday, April 19 at 6:40 CT on Marquee, 670 The Score

Bet of the Day:

The only thing that catches my eye is taking the under on first-inning runs, especially with an opener on the Rays side and another cold night at Wrigley Field. But I’m laying low this time around.

Starting Pitchers

Rays: Matt Wisler (R)

versus

Cubs: Justin Steele (L)

Chicago Cubs (Lineup Discussion):

1. Jonathan Villar, 3B
2. Seiya Suzuki, RF
3. Willson Contreras, C
4. Ian Happ, LF
5. Frank Schwindel, 1B
6. Nick Madrigal, 2B
7. Jason Heyward, CF
8. Clint Frazier, DH
9. Nico Hoerner, SS

Tampa Bay Rays:

1. Randy Arozarena, LF
2. Wander Franco, SS
3. Harold Ramirez, 1B
4. Yandy Díaz, 3B
5. Brandon Lowe, DH
6. Manuel Margot, CF
7. Mike Zunino, C
8. Josh Lowe, RF
9. Taylor Walls, 2B

written by

Michael Cerami began covering the Chicago Cubs for Bleacher Nation as a part-time contributor in 2015. One year later, he joined Bleacher Nation full-time, covering the Chicago Cubs and Major League Baseball. Today, Michael runs Bleacher Nation, contributing as a writer (Cubs, MLB) and an editor for all sections of the site, including the Chicago Bears, Bulls, and Blackhawks, as well as MLB, NBA, NHL, and NFL. In 2019, Michael was the co-host of NBC Sports Chicago's Cubs Post-Game Show Outside the Ivy. You can find him on Twitter/X @Michael_Cerami

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