Ask and ye shall receive: Alfonso Rivas is back in the Cubs starting lineup tonight, just in time to face … one of the best strikeout pitchers of the 2022 MLB Season, Kyle Wright.
Chicago Cubs Lineup:
1. Rafael Ortega, DH
2. Seiya Suzuki, RF
3. Ian Happ, LF
4. Willson Contreras, C
5. Jonathan Villar, 2B
6. Alfonso Rivas, 1B
7. Jason Heyward, CF
8. Patrick Wisdom, 3B
9. Nico Hoerner, SS
Kyle Wright has struck out 26 batters in his three starts of the season, good for a 39.4 K% (4th highest among all starters in MLB). And he’s actually carrying reverse splits this season, striking out lefties (44.4%) at a higher rate than righties (35.9%). Not exactly the best night for Alfonso Rivas to get one of his rare starts, but beggars can’t be choosers, I guess!
With Alfonso Rivas at first base, Frank Schwindel is on the bench, right alongside Nick Madrigal (kind of a weird night to sit your best anti-strikeout bat…). That leaves room for Jonathan Villar at second base, Rafael Ortega at DH, and Jason Heyward at center field.
You’ll notice the Cubs biggest strikeout enthusiast, Patrick Wisdom, is still in the lineup, but I’m actually on board with that. Not only is he your best defensive option at third base right now, he’s also hitting the ball well lately. More importantly, the Cubs might need him to run into a homer if they’re going to put some runs on the board early. So, yes, I get it.
As usual, we’ll have your full Pre-Gamin’ post closer to game time (6:20 CT).