Game Eighteen: Cubs (10-7) vs. Pirates (11-8)
- Game Time – 7:05pm CDT
- Coverage – TV: Comcast SportsNet Plus – Radio: WBBM 780, Cubs Radio Network, XM Radio Channels 183, 844
- Location – Wrigley Field, Chicago
Jason Hammel (1-1, 5.19/1.27/3.79) vs. Vance Worley (2-1, 4.00/1.50/3.43)
The Cubs return home to Wrigley Field following a rather successful road trip through Pittsburgh and Cincinnati. The Cubs went 4-2 in what turned out to be a six-game trip after Saturday’s rainout.
The Cubs will take on the Pirates for the next three days. Following Thursday’s day off, the Brewers make their first stop at Wrigley for a weekend series.
The Cubs split the four games in the Steel City last week. The Cubs felt they should have at least won the series if not take all four games from the Bucs. The Cubs outscored the Pirates 21-19 over the four games.
All eyes will be on Addison Russell tonight as he makes his Wrigley Field debut in a Cubs’ uniform. Russell played a big role in the sweep in Cincinnati and he figures to only get more comfortable with every game he plays.
And the Cubs will run out its 25 and under infield at Wrigley in front of the home crowd for the first time … Anthony Rizzo, Addison Russell, Starlin Castro and Kris Bryant around the diamond from first to third respectively.
Joe Maddon and Chris Bosio switched Jason Hammel and Travis Wood in the rotation. Hammel gets the ball tonight in the opener against the pesky Vance Worley. Hammel hasn’t picked up where he left off last season with the Cubs and in fact he has pitched this year like most thought he would last season. The Cubs could use at least a quality start from Hammel tonight.
Travis Wood faces fellow lefty Jeff Locke on Tuesday night. And Kyle Hendricks is scheduled to take on Pirates’ ace Gerrit Cole in the finale on Wednesday night.
Tonight all starts with Jason Hammel …
Jason Hammel stays on regular rest today and faces the Pirates for the second time in as many starts. Hammel struggled with his command and could not find a rhythm on a rather cold night at PNC Park. Hammel gave up four runs, three earned, on six hits with no walks and five strikeouts in five innings.
Hammel said before the season his goal was to complete 200 innings this year. He is going to have to go longer than the 5 2/3 innings his averaging per start to come close to reaching his goal. Hammel has given up at least three earned runs in each of his first three outings and has only one quality start under his belt.
The Cubs could really use for Jason Hammel to pitch like he did last year at Wrigley tonight against the Pirates. Hammel was 4-1 in seven starts with a 2.35 ERA and a 0.91 WHIP.
Tonight is Hammel’s tenth career appearance against the Pirates. Hammel is 4-4 in eight career starts, nine appearances, with a 4.03 ERA and a 1.11 WHIP. Last year Hammel was 2-2 in four starts versus the Bucs with a 3.51 ERA and a 1.05 WHIP.
Pirates Career Numbers against Jason Hammel
- Andrew McCutchen: 6-for-23 with one double, two home runs and one walk
- Pedro Alvarez: 4-for-18 with one triple, two home runs and one walk
- Neil Walker: 3-for-12 with two walks
- Starling Marte: 3-for-10
- Corey Hart: 1-for-9
- Jordy Mercer: 3-for-10 with one double
- Josh Harrison: 1-for-7 with one walk
- Gregory Polanco: 3-for-9 with one double and one home run
- Francisco Cervelli: 3-for-5 with one double
- Chris Stewart: 2-for-4 with one walk
- Jung Ho Kang: 0-for-1
- Vance Worley: 0-for-2
- Andrew Lambo: 0-for-1
Vance Worley shut down the Cubs last Wednesday night for 5 2/3 innings. The Cubs had problems picking him up as the crafty righty kept the Cubs off balance throughout his outing. Worley has dominated the Cubs throughout his career despite all of the change that has taken place with the North Side Nine.
Due to the schedule makers, Vance Worley makes his fourth start of the season tonight but has faced only two teams. Worley’s first two games came against the Brewers.
The road was not as kind to Worley last season after he made his way back to the bigs with the Pirates. Worley was a sensational 5-2 in seven starts at PNC with a 2.28 ERA and a 1.06 WHIP. And he’s success in Pittsburgh has carried over to this year. On the road last season, Worley was 3-2 in 11 games, 10 starts, with a 3.27 ERA and a 1.33 WHIP.
Vance Worley is 3-0 in five career starts against the Cubs with a 1.97 ERA and a 1.13 WHIP … at Wrigley Field, 2-0 in three starts with a 2.79 ERA and a 1.09 WHIP.
Cubs Career Numbers against Vance Worley
- Starlin Castro: 1-for-11 with two walks
- Miguel Montero: 1-for-12 with one walk
- Chris Coghlan: 2-for-7 with three walks
- Dexter Fowler: 3-for-8
- Anthony Rizzo: 1-for-5 with one home run and one walk
- Jorge Soler: 0-for-4 with one walk
- Chris Denorfia: 1-for-5 with one walk
- Kris Bryant: 1-for-3 with one double
- Jason Hammel: 1-for-2
- Addison Russell: 1-for-2
- Jonathan Herrera: 1-for-1
- Travis Wood: 0-for-1
Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …