Game Twelve: Cubs (9-2) vs. Rockies (6-5)
- Game Time – 1:20pm CDT
- Coverage – TV: WGN-TV – Radio: WSCR 670 The Score, Cubs Radio Network, XM Radio Channels 183, 844
- Location – Wrigley Field, Chicago
Jon Lester (1-0, 2.77/0.84/3.23) vs. Tyler Chatwood (1-1, 4.38/1.54/4.94)
The Cubs’ first homestand of the season concludes this afternoon with the last of three with the Rockies. The Cubs are 4-1 at Wrigley Field this year and have a chance today with a victory behind Jon Lester to have a happy flight to St. Louis after posting their fourth straight series victory.
The Cubs split the first two games against the Rockies but looked Saturday more like the team that started the season 8-1 instead of the group of players that took the field in the series opener.
Joe Maddon is likely to run out his third different lineup in as many games. Rockies’ starter Tyler Chatwood’s splits are about even (RHB: .285/.348/.427 with .776 OPS; LHB:.294/.379/.419 with .798 OPS). Maddon would like to get Addison Russell a mental day off. Javier Baez is expected at shortstop today with Ben Zobrist back at second and Jason Heyward in the outfield. David Ross should be behind the plate with Jon Lester on the hill.
The Cubs hit the road after today’s game and will make their way to St. Louis. First round of the Cubs-Cardinals season series that begins Monday at Busch Stadium.
Today all starts with Jon Lester …
Jon Lester must pitch better today than he did on Opening Night at Wrigley last Monday. Lester technically put together a quality start but he really struggled against the Reds lineup. Lester lasted six innings and gave up three runs on five hits with two walks and five strikeouts in a game the Cubs eventually won 5-3 in dramatic fashion. Lester missed his spots, pitched from behind in the count, simply the exact opposite of what he did in Anaheim back on April 5.
Lester depends on his routine and should be better today because he’s had a chance to settle in to the Cubs new digs at Wrigley. Lester has to pitch better against a Rockies’ lineup that can not only hit but will run and run and run some more once they get on base.
In two starts this season Lester’s numbers look good (four runs, nine hits, two walks, nine strikeouts, 13 innings), he has to pitch better this afternoon and put his team in line to win the game.
Jon Lester is 1-1 with a 1.93 ERA and 0.93 WHIP in two career regular season starts against the Rockies. One of those starts came last season (July 29) at Wrigley. Lester allowed two runs on five hits with a walk in eight innings and tied a career-high with 14 strikeouts.
Rockies Career Numbers against Jon Lester
- Mark Reynolds: 8-for-37 with three doubles, one home run and five walks
- Ryan Raburn: 3-for-15
- Carlos Gonzalez: 2-for-9 with one home run
- Gerardo Parra: 2-for-5
- Nolan Arenado: 0-for-2
- Nick Hundley: 1-for-3
- D.J. LeMahieu: 0-for-3
- Ben Paulsen: 1-for-3
- Brandon Barnes: 0-for-1
For the third straight day, the Cubs will see a pitcher they have basically zero history against in Tyler Chatwood. The Rockies seemingly run out pitchers very few in the game are familiar with on a yearly basis and sometimes that can work to a team’s advantage. Chatwood missed
The Giants knocked Chatwood around late in his last start (two, two-run homers from Hunter Pence, Trevor Brown). Chatwood allowed five runs on 11 hits with a walk and two strikeouts in six innings. Chatwood wasn’t nearly as good, statistically, against the Giants as he was on his first start against the Diamondbacks.
In two starts this season, Chatwood has allowed seven runs, six earned, on 18 hits with a walk and five strikeouts in 12 1/3 innings.
Chatwood’s last start against the Cubs was three years ago at Coors Field. Tyler Chatwood limited a Cubs’ lineup on July 21, 2013 that featured Starlin Castro, Anthony Rizzo and Alfonso Soriano and was started by Edwin Jackson to a pair of runs, one earned, on seven hits with four walks and two strikeouts in six innings. Rizzo took him deep, Rex Brothers picked up the save and Dexter Fowler was 0-for-4 with three strikeouts.
Cubs Career Numbers against Tyler Chatwood
- Miguel Montero: 3-for-8 with one double
- Ben Zobrist: 1-for-4 with one double and one walk
- David Ross: 2-for-5 with one double
- Jason Heyward: 0-for-3 with one walk
- Anthony Rizzo: 2-for-3 with one home run
Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …