Game Twenty: Cubs (14-5) vs. Brewers (8-11)
- Game Time – 7:05pm CDT
- Coverage – TV: Comcast SportsNet – Radio: WSCR 670 The Score, Cubs Radio Network, XM Radio Channels 186, 844
- Location – Wrigley Field, Chicago
Kyle Hendricks (1-2, 4.00/1.16/2.65) vs. Jimmy Nelson (3-1, 3.46/1.23/5.79)
The Cubs return to the field tonight following Monday’s break and opens a six-game homestand with the first of three against the Brewers. Starting tonight, 16 of the Cubs next 19 games will be at Wrigley Field. After Sunday’s finale with the Braves, Joe Maddon’s team has three games versus the Pirates at PNC Park then it’s back to Wrigley for 10 games versus the Nationals, Padres and Pirates.
Jake Arrieta will not be on the mound tonight. His accomplishment last Thursday in Cincinnati will be celebrated prior to first pitch. Arrieta is just the third pitcher in franchise history, second in the Modern era to throw multiple no-hitters.
The Cubs must not let off the gas over the next six games against the Brewers and Braves. These are the games teams with post-season aspirations must win. The Cubs were 14-5 versus the Brewers a year ago. The Cubs will face a trio of young pitchers this series that are capable of shutting down the offense.
After tonight’s matchup of Kyle Hendricks and Jimmy Nelson, Jake Arrieta faces Taylor Jungmann under the lights Wednesday. And the series wraps up with Jon Lester taking on Zach Davies on Thursday afternoon.
Tonight all starts with Kyle Hendricks …
Kyle Hendricks had a rough time in his last start. Hendricks had little to no movement on his pitches, especially early in the game, and the Cardinals pounced on him. Hendricks became the Cubs first starter not to complete at least six innings this season after allowing four runs on seven hits with two walks and five strikeouts in 5 1/3 innings. The Cubs lost the rain delayed game by a final of 5-3.
Hendricks must be better tonight than he was against the Cardinals. Hendricks cannot pitch from behind in the count and expect to have success in the majors. Hendricks has pitched better this year than he did and needs to bounce back with a good outing versus the Brewers to set the tone for the series.
For his career, Hendricks is 4-1 in six starts versus the Brewers with a 1.45 ERA and 0.91 WHIP. Hendricks was 2-1 in four starts against the Brewers a year ago with a 1.48 ERA and 0.74 WHIP.
Brewers Career Numbers against Kyle Hendricks
- Scooter Gennett: 3-for-18
- Ryan Braun: 1-for-8
- Martin Maldonado: 2-for-8 with one walk
- Jonathan Lucroy: 1-for-7
- Domingo Santana: 0-for-4
Jimmy Nelson has been a bright spot for a Brewers team that has struggled in the win-loss column over the first 19 games of the season. Nelson has quality starts in three of his four games and has posted wins in each of his last three times out.
Nelson gave up four runs on 10 hits with a walk and six strikeouts to the Twins in 6 2/3 innings in his last start. Nelson is a very good right hander that when he’s on can shut down an offense.
The Cubs relentless offense must make him work tonight. Nelson will issue one free pass after another if given the opportunity. Nelson has given up 11 runs, 10 earned, on 22 hits with 10 walks and 19 strikeouts in 26 innings this season. In recent years, the Cubs have been ultra-aggressive against Nelson and haven’t been able to put up the runs they should have.
Jimmy Nelson is 0-3 in seven career appearances, five starts, against the Cubs with a 3.60 ERA and 1.11 WHIP. At Wrigley Field, the talented right-hander is 0-1 in three games, two starts, with a 3.07 ERA and 1.23 WHIP.
Cubs Career Numbers against Jimmy Nelson
- Jorge Soler: 5-for-15 with three doubles and one home run
- Anthony Rizzo: 4-for-13 with one double, one triple and one home run
- Dexter Fowler: 2-for-9 with one home run and one walk
- Addison Russell: 1-for-8
- Kris Bryant: 0-for-7
- Javier Baez: 3-for-6
- Jason Heyward: 3-for-5 with one double
- Miguel Montero: 2-for-4 with one double and two walks
- David Ross: 0-for-1 with two walks
- Matt Szczur: 0-for-2
Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …