RECORDS: Cardinals 31-29 Cubs 34-27
GAMETIMES: Friday 1:20, Saturday and Sunday at 6:05
TV: NBCSN Friday, Fox Saturday, ESPN Sunday
HE DOESN’T LIKE YOU: Viva El Birdos
PROBABLE CARDINALS LINEUP
Dexter Fowler – RF
Paul DeJong – SS
Paul Goldschmidt – 1B
Marcell Ozuna – LF
Jedd Gyorko – 3B
Harrison Bader – CF
Matt Wieters – C
Kolten Wong – 2B
PROBABLE CUBS LINEUP
Anthony Rizzo – 1B
Kris Bryant – 3B
Carlos Gonzalez – LF
Javier Baez – SS
Jason Heyward – RF
Victor Caratini – C
David Bote – 2B
Albert Almora Jr. – CF
The Cardinals had a sweep to avenge last weekend down in Mos Eisley, and now so do the Cubs. If they were to trade sweeps all season, this would probably turn into some holy war. There is obviously no better or worse feeling, depending on how that particular set goes for you. The last thing we need is to be this bipolar, but we’ll take a Cubs sweep this weekend. Let’s get greedy.
Since the Cubs last saw the Cards five days ago, they split two games with the Reds and had one rained out. Thanks to the scheduled off-day and then bonus one, the Cubs will see the same three pitchers they couldn’t do much with last weekend. So that’s a treat. Perhaps the frequency of appearances will help. Lester and Hendricks didn’t throw against the Cards last time, so that…helps? Basically we’re all gonna shit if the Cubs are held at arm’s length by Adam Goddamn Wainwright again, is what I’m saying. But if his defense keeps pulling rabbits out of their ass like they did last time…hopefully the line drives the Cubs did hit aren’t right at people this time.
The Cards are carrying a couple injuries into this one. Matt Carpenter left the game yesterday early and isn’t playing today, and it’s questionable whether he’ll play this weekend. Yadier Molina continues to be out and there’s no word on when he might be back. Which is actually fine for them, though you’ll never get anyone to say it, because Matt Wieters has been bette at the plate than Yadi. But he doesn’t provide the kind of leadership where you ignore what’s actually going on during a play to argue with an ump or ground out harmlessly to short a lot. I guess we just don’t understand baseball.
For the Cubs, they’ll trot out the goofy lineup today when you know it’s the time where Maddon thinks it’s time to give the team a chuckle. Greatest Leadoff Hitter In History Anthony Rizzo returns as Schwarber is given the day off. Somehow, Maddon is still convinced that Carlos Gonzalez isn’t dead, and he’s hitting third, giving the hands team in the outfield the full game. Maddon also hasn’t noticed that Heyward hasn’t hit in six weeks, so he’ll be in the five-spot. Good times all around here. At least Almora and Bote are playing I guess. Maybe this is just not the thing to worry about right now.
The Cards can get right into the thick of this with a series win, as they’re only 2.5 games behind the Cubs and Brewers. And their schedule is awfully light after this, with 11 games against the Marlins and Mets after this, whereas as the Cubs have to go to the funhouse of Coors Field and then into the tiger pit of Dodger Stadium. Then again, playing the Marlins didn’t do much for the Brewers this week. That’s baseball.
It’s been a good homestand so far. Be a good idea to finish it out strong.