Game One Hundred Twenty: Cubs (52-67) vs. Reds (67-52)
- Game Time – 1:20pm CDT
- Coverage – TV: WGN TV – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channels 183/844
- Location – Wrigley Field, Chicago
Chris Rusin (2-1, 3.08/1.29) vs. Bronson Arroyo (10-9, 3.51/1.14)
The Cubs will try to salvage the final game of the series against the Reds this afternoon behind Chris Rusin. The Cubs’ other lefty in the rotation is coming off a good start in St. Louis and will have the tough task of shutting down the Reds’ offense in their home park. The Reds dominance over the Cubs at Wrigley Field has gone from frustrating to ridiculous. The Cubs are 1-8 against the Reds this season at Wrigley and are 1-14 in their last 15 games at Wrigley versus Dusty Baker’s team. Maybe the Cubs should make the Reds feel a little uncomfortable at the Friendly Confines for the first time in more than two years.
Dale Sveum should load his lineup with as many lefties as possible today. Bronson Arroyo has owned the Cubs for years but he does struggle with left-handed batters. Lefties are hitting .286/.322/.446 with 13 home runs off Arroyo this year while right-handers are hitting .215/.250/.324 with six home runs.
Dale Sveum figures to have a full bullpen today with the exception of Eduardo Sanchez. James Russell, Blake Parker and Kevin Gregg were not extended on Tuesday night and Pedro Strop threw only 16 pitches in 1 2/3 innings.
This afternoon all starts with Chris Rusin …
Chris Rusin is coming off a very good outing against the Cardinals. Rusin tossed six innings of shutout ball in St. Louis, his second scoreless outing in the majors this season. The Cardinals managed seven hits and two walks off Rusin but he used the pitcher’s spot to his advantage and kept the Redbirds off the board. Rusin struck out a season-high five batters in route to his second win of the year.
Rusin will face a huge challenge this afternoon. Rusin has made only one other start at Wrigley this season and it was not a good outing. Rusin allowed four runs on seven hits with three walks and four strikeouts in five innings to the Dodgers. Rusin said he learned a lot from that outing.
Chris Rusin is 1-1 in three starts at Wrigley in his short time in the majors with a 6.60 ERA and a 1.73 WHIP. A good outing today would go a long way to Rusin staying in the rotation for the remainder of the season.
Chris Rusin makes his second career start against the Redlegs this afternoon. Rusin did not fare too well last September 19 at Wrigley. Joey Votto and company scored five runs on 10 hits with two walks and two strikeouts in five innings.
Reds Career Numbers against Chris Rusin
- Jay Bruce – 0-for-3
- Ryan Ludwick – 1-for-2 with a walk
- Brandon Phillips – 1-for-3
- Joey Votto – 2-for-3 with a double
A struggling Cubs’ offense will have the joy of facing Bronson Arroyo this afternoon. Arroyo has owned the Cubs during his time with the Reds since Theo Epstein traded him to Cincinnati for Wily Mo Pena prior to the 2006 season.
Arroyo is coming off an excellent outing against the Padres. Arroyo allowed one run on four hits with no walks and seven strikeouts in seven innings of work. Arroyo rebounded nicely from his horrible outing against the Cardinals and picked up a win. Arroyo is 2-2 in four starts since the break with a 3.96 ERA and a 1.20 WHIP.
Bronson Arroyo has already beaten the Cubs once this season. Arroyo held the Cubs to three runs on six hits with two walks and two strikeouts in six innings in the Queen City on May 24. Arroyo is 12-9 in 29 career games, 27 starts, against the Cubs with a 3.04 ERA and a 1.15 WHIP … and at Wrigley Field, 7-3 in 14 games, 13 starts, with a 3.06 ERA and a 1.18 WHIP.
Cubs Career Numbers against Bronson Arroyo
- Darwin Barney – 2-for-17
- Starlin Castro – 6-for-23 with a double and a home run
- David DeJesus – 4-for-22 with two walks
- Cole Gillespie – 0-for-1
- Dioner Navarro – 1-for-7 with a walk
- Anthony Rizzo – 3-for-11
- Nate Schierholtz – 4-for-13 with two doubles
Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …