Game One Hundred Fifty-Nine: Cubs (65-93) vs. Pirates (91-67)
- Game Time – 1:20pm CDT
- Coverage – TV: WGN TV – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channels 186/844
- Location – Wrigley Field, Chicago
Jake Arrieta (3-2, 3.94/1.14/5.04) vs. Francisco Liriano (16-7, 2.88/1.21/2.92)
The Cubs will try to close out their 2013 home schedule with a win today behind Jake Arrieta. The Cubs wrap up the series and season series against the Pirates (6-12) and the offense faces a big challenge with Francisco Liriano taking the ball for Clint Hurdle.
The Cubs have really struggled at Wrigley this season and set a new franchise mark with their 50th home loss on Tuesday. The Cubs ended up 12-18 in 30 night games at Wrigley this season and own a 30-50 record at home this year.
With Liriano on the hill for the Pirates, look for Dale Sveum to run out his right-handed lineup that could include catcher J.C. Boscan. With Welington Castillo out for the season, Dioner Navarro has started every game on the homestand (1-5) and with the day game after night game and Boscan’s familiarity with Jake Arrieta, it might be a good time to get Navarro a breather before the final three games in St. Louis.
Today is the last game of 20 in a row that began back on September 6. The Cubs are 6-13 over that span.
The last game of the season at Wrigley all starts with Jake Arrieta …
Jake Arrieta is coming off a dominant start against the Brewers and will look to follow it up this afternoon in his last start of the season. Arrieta limed the Brewers to one run on three hits in seven innings. Arrieta took a one-hit shutout into the seventh before giving up a solo homer and a double. If Arrieta can pitch like he has for the most part in a Cubs’ uniform next season, the Cubs have found a good power to arm to compliment Jeff Samardzija in the rotation.
Jake Arrieta has made eight starts for the Cubs, two were not-so-good, one was average and the other five have been more than solid. Arrieta is 2-1 in his last four starts with a 3.42 ERA and a 0.97 WHIP. Arrieta has walked only two batters in his last 12 innings with 11 strikeouts and nine hits allowed.
The Pirates had a big night against Arrieta when they faced him 12 days ago. The Pirates went back-to-back-to back and knocked Arrieta out of the game after five innings. Arrieta gave up four runs, three earned, on six hits with one walks and six strikeouts.
Arrieta faces the Pirates for the second time in the last two weeks and he is 2-0 in three career starts against the Bucs with a 3.71 ERA and a 1.18 WHIP.
Pirates Career Numbers against Jake Arrieta
- Russell Martin – 4-for-16 with a home run and a walk
- Andrew McCutchen – 4-for-9 with a double
- Jose Tabata – 2-for-7 with two walks
- Neil Walker – 0-for-9
- Justin Morneau – 1-for-7 with a walk
- Garrett Jones – 2-for-5 with a home run and two walks
- Pedro Alvarez – 1-for-5 with a home run
- Clint Barmes – 0-for-5
- Travis Snider – 1-for-5
- Josh Harrison – 0-for-3
- John Buck – 1-for-2
The Cubs will get their fifth and final look of the year at Francisco Liriano, and considering how well they’ve done, that is probably a good thing. After no hitting the Cubs for a majority of his outing, Liriano tossed eight innings of excellent ball against the Reds. Liriano pulled himself out of the game after the eighth because he said he was exhausted. The Pirates went onto lose the game after Jordy Mercer made an ill-advised off-balance throw in the ninth inning that opened the door for Cincinnati.
Francisco Liriano is 1-1 in his last four starts with a 4.70 ERA and a 1.30 WHIP and does appear to be running out of gas.
Francisco Liriano is a perfect 3-0 in four starts against the Cubs this season with a 1.24 ERA and a 0.86 WHIP. Liriano has allowed only 11 hits to the Cubs with 14 walks in 29 innings.
Cubs Numbers against Francisco Liriano in 2013
- Darwin Barney (.223) – 0-for-10 with three walks
- Starlin Castro (.285) – 1-for-11 with a double and two walks
- Anthony Rizzo (.255) – 0-for-11 with two walk
- Dioner Navarro (.306) – 2-for-3 with a walk
- Junior Lake (.394) – 1-for-3
- Darnell McDonald (.282) – 1-for-3
- Donnie Murphy (.284) – 0-for-3
- Ryan Sweeney (.294) – 0-for-3
- Brian Bogusevic (.333) – 0-for-2
Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …