Game Fourteen: Cubs (8-5) vs. Pirates (6-8)
- Game Time – 6:05pm CDT
- Coverage – TV: Comcast SportsNet – Radio: WBBM 780, Cubs Radio Network, XM Radio Channels 84, 844
- Location – PNC Park, Pittsburgh
Jason Hammel (1-0, 5.11/1.30/3.59) vs. Vance Worley (1-1, 5.84/1.54/3.91)
Weather permitting … The Cubs turn to Jason Hammel tonight for game three in Pittsburgh. And with a win, the Cubs could take the first series of the season against the Pirates.
With the bullpen at less than full strength, Joe Maddon could really use at least seven innings from Jason Hammel. Maddon went to his pen in the sixth last night but was able to stay away from Pedro Strop and Zac Rosscup. Hector Rondon was called on for the ninth and put together an efficient inning. But if Maddon can keep from using Rondon tonight, the Cubs closer would be available for Thursday’s finale if needed.
Vance Worley is the type of pitcher that has fared well against the Cubs over the years. Maddon shouldn’t load up the lineup with lefties. Right handed batters have hit better against Worley this season while he’s struggled with throwing strikes to left handers. Over the course of his career, right handers (.288/.332/.400) have hit better against Worley than lefties (.268/.338/.354).
Tonight all starts with Jason Hammel …
Jason Hammel takes the hill for the third time this season. Hammel is coming off a better start than his line indicates. Hammel left last Friday’s game against the Padres in the seventh inning with the Cubs leading 4-2 with two one and one out. Brian Schlitter didn’t execute a 1-2 pitch to Wil Myers. The ball ended up beyond the wall in center field and closed the book on Hammel’s outing. Hammel was charged with four runs on seven hits with a walk and five strikeouts in 6 1/3 innings.
After posting a quality start and a win in his return to Denver, Hammel was hung with a no decision.
Jason Hammel makes the eighth start of his career against the Pirates tonight. Hammel is 4-3 in eight career appearances, seven starts, with a 3.88 ERA and a 1.10 WHIP. Hammel was 2-2 in four starts versus the Pirates last season before the trade with a 3.51 ERA and a 1.05 WHIP. At PNC last season, 1-1 in two starts with a 3.86 ERA and a 1.37 WHIP.
Pirates Career Numbers against Jason Hammel
- Andrew McCutchen: 6-for-20 with one double, two home runs and one walk
- Pedro Alvarez: 3-for-17 with one triple, two home runs and one walk
- Neil Walker: 2-for-9 with two walks
- Corey Hart: 1-for-9
- Jordy Mercer: 3-for-10 with one triple
- Starling Marte: 2-for-9
- Josh Harrison: 1-for-4 with one walk
- Gregory Polanco: 1-for-6
- Francisco Cervelli: 2-for-3
- Tony Sanchez: 0-for-2
After a rough first outing of the season, Vance Worley picked up a win in his last start against the Brewers. Worley actually faced the Brewers in each of his first two games. Milwaukee touched up Worley for six runs on seven hits with two walks in 6 1/3 innings at Miller Park. Worley regrouped and held the Brewers to two runs on six hits with four walks and six strikeouts over 6 innings five days ago.
The Cubs must be patient with Vance Worley tonight. Worley will issue free passes if the offense is willing to take them.
Vance Worley makes his fifth career start against the Cubs. Worley is 2-0 in the first four with a 2.39 ERA and a 1.06 WHIP. Last year in the Pirates rotation, Worley was 1-0 in two starts against the Cubs with a 3.97 ERA and a 1.32 WHIP.
Cubs Career Numbers against Vance Worley
- Starlin Castro: 1-for-8 with two walks
- Miguel Montero: 1-for-9 with one walk
- Chris Coghlan: 1-for-4 with three walks
- Dexter Fowler: 2-for-7
- Anthony Rizzo: 1-for-3 with one home run
- Jorge Soler: 0-for-2
- Jonathan Herrera: 1-for-1
- Travis Wood: 0-for-1
Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …