|CHICAGO CUBS ( LESTER )|
ST LOUIS ( WEAVER )
|907||CHICAGO CUBS||+115||Ov 8.5,+110||+125||Ov 8.5,+100|
|908||ST LOUIS||-125||Un 8.5,-130||-135||Un 8.5,-120|
|vs Right-handed Starters||66-54||-16.8||54-61||4.9||0.251||0.326||0.422||0.748||4.4||0.236||0.309||0.391||0.700|
|Past 7 Games||5-2||+3||1-6||3.6||0.262||0.341||0.378||0.719||3.3||0.229||0.288||0.358||0.647|
|vs Left-handed Starters||19-15||+2.6||14-16||4.6||0.246||0.324||0.416||0.740||3.8||0.227||0.285||0.378||0.664|
|Past 7 Games||4-3||+0.8||4-3||5.6||0.267||0.354||0.438||0.793||5.1||0.268||0.333||0.426||0.759|
|9/12/2017||QUINTANA(L)||NY METS||GSELLMAN(R)||8-3||W||-290||8.5 un||O||11||8||0||7||9||0|
|9/13/2017||LESTER(L)||NY METS||HARVEY(R)||17-5||W||-270||8.5 ov||O||16||10||0||10||9||1|
|9/14/2017||TSENG(R)||NY METS||LUGO(R)||14-6||W||-210||9.5 un||O||14||3||1||11||6||3|
|9/15/2017||LACKEY(R)||ST LOUIS||MARTINEZ(R)||8-2||W||-120||9 ov||O||8||4||0||7||6||1|
|9/16/2017||HENDRICKS(R)||ST LOUIS||WACHA(R)||4-1||W||-145||9.5 ov||U||10||12||0||6||5||0|
|9/17/2017||QUINTANA(L)||ST LOUIS||LYNN(R)||4-3||W||-180||9 ov||U||11||12||1||10||11||0|
|9/19/2017||MONTGOMERY(L)||@ TAMPA BAY||ARCHER(R)||2-1||W||145||8 ov||U||6||4||1||1||1||0|
|9/20/2017||LESTER(L)||@ TAMPA BAY||SNELL(L)||1-8||L||-115||8 un||O||5||6||0||10||8||0|
|9/21/2017||ARRIETA(R)||@ MILWAUKEE||DAVIES(R)||5-3||W||-135||9 ov||U||12||8||0||12||12||0|
|9/22/2017||LACKEY(R)||@ MILWAUKEE||WOODRUFF(R)||5-4||W||-115||9.5 ov||U||9||9||0||8||4||0|
|9/23/2017||HENDRICKS(R)||@ MILWAUKEE||SUTER(L)||3-4||L||-135||9 ov||U||8||7||0||11||8||1|
|9/24/2017||QUINTANA(L)||@ MILWAUKEE||ANDERSON(R)||5-0||W||-130||9 ev||U||10||4||0||3||4||0|
|9/25/2017||LESTER(L)||@ ST LOUIS||WEAVER(R)|| |
|9/26/2017||ARRIETA(R)||@ ST LOUIS||MARTINEZ(R)|| |
|9/27/2017||LACKEY(R)||@ ST LOUIS||WACHA(R)|| |
|9/28/2017||HENDRICKS(R)||@ ST LOUIS||LYNN(R)|| |
|9/30/2017|| ||CINCINNATI|| || |
|10/1/2017|| ||CINCINNATI|| || |
|9/15/2017||MARTINEZ(R)||@ CHICAGO CUBS||LACKEY(R)||2-8||L||110||9 ov||O||7||6||1||8||4||0|
|9/16/2017||WACHA(R)||@ CHICAGO CUBS||HENDRICKS(R)||1-4||L||135||9.5 ov||U||6||5||0||10||12||0|
|9/17/2017||LYNN(R)||@ CHICAGO CUBS||QUINTANA(L)||3-4||L||170||9 ov||U||10||11||0||11||12||1|
|9/19/2017||FLAHERTY(R)||@ CINCINNATI||STEPHENS(R)||8-7||W||-110||10 ev||O||8||5||0||8||6||1|
|9/20/2017||WEAVER(R)||@ CINCINNATI||DAVIS(R)||9-2||W||-185||9.5 ov||O||11||8||0||6||4||0|
|9/21/2017||MARTINEZ(R)||@ CINCINNATI||BAILEY(R)||8-5||W||-190||9 ov||O||14||12||1||11||9||0|
|9/22/2017||WACHA(R)||@ PITTSBURGH||NOVA(R)||4-3||W||-150||8.5 ev||U||11||10||1||5||5||2|
|9/23/2017||LYNN(R)||@ PITTSBURGH||COLE(R)||6-11||L||105||8 un||O||9||6||0||14||8||2|
|9/24/2017||GANT(R)||@ PITTSBURGH||TAILLON(R)||1-4||L||-115||9 un||U||4||8||1||8||7||0|
|9/25/2017||WEAVER(R)||CHICAGO CUBS||LESTER(L)|| |
|9/26/2017||MARTINEZ(R)||CHICAGO CUBS||ARRIETA(R)|| |
|9/27/2017||WACHA(R)||CHICAGO CUBS||LACKEY(R)|| |
|9/28/2017||LYNN(R)||CHICAGO CUBS||HENDRICKS(R)|| |
|9/30/2017|| ||MILWAUKEE|| || |
|10/1/2017|| ||MILWAUKEE|| || |
|CHICAGO CUBS: 2016: 103-58, won World Series
Manager: Joe Maddon (third season)
Who's new? OF Jon Jay, RHP Wade Davis, LHP Brett Anderson, RHP Koji Uehara, LHP Brian Duensing, RHP Eddie Butler
Who's gone? OF Dexter Fowler, IF/OF Jorge Soler, LHP Aroldis Chapman, LHP Travis Wood, RHP Trevor Cahill, RHP Jason Hammel
Projected lineup: LF Kyle Schwarber (.000, 0 HR, 0 RBI in two games), 3B Kris Bryant (.292, 39, 102), 1B Anthony Rizzo (.292, 32, 109), 2B Ben Zobrist (.272, 18, 76), SS Addison Russell (.238, 21, 95), RF Jason Heyward (.230, 7, 49, 11 SB), C Willson Contreras (.282, 12, 35), CF Jon Jay (.291, 2, 26 with Padres) or Albert Almora (.277, 3, 14 in 47 games)
Rotation: LH Jon Lester (19-5, 2.44 ERA), RH Jake Arrieta (18-8, 3.10), RH Kyle Hendricks (16-8, 2.13), RH John Lackey (11-8, 3.35), LH Brett Anderson (1-2, 11.91 in four games with Dodgers) or LH Mike Montgomery (4-5, 2.52 with Mariners and Cubs) or RH Eddie Butler (2-5, 7.17 with Rockies) or LH Rob Zastryzny (1-0, 1.13 ERA in eight games) or RH Alec Mills (0-0, 13.50 in three games with Royals)
Key relievers: RH Wade Davis (2-1, 1.87, 27/30 SV with Royals), RH Pedro Strop (2-2, 2.85), RH Hector Rondon (2-3, 3.53, 18/23 SV), RH Koji Uehara (2-3, 3.45, 7/9 SV with Red Sox), RH Carl Edwards Jr. (0-1, 3.75), RH Justin Grimm (2-1, 4.10), LH Brian Duensing (1-0, 4.05 with Royals)
Hot spots: Fifth Starter. Of all the candidates vying to replace Hammel, who signed with Kansas City as a free agent, most have plenty of upside but didn't log many innings last year. That includes Anderson, who had one productive season and one unproductive season for the Dodgers. Keep an eye on southpaw Montgomery, who tossed two shutouts as a starter for the Mariners in 2015, came to the Cubs last year in a midseason trade, then was effective as a reliever. Last time he was on the mound, he recorded the save in Game 7 of the World Series.
Outlook: There hasn't been a back-to-back champion this century. For opponents of the Cubs, that might be the most tangible nugget of hope. Most of the key players return from a powerhouse team that played historically good defense, got no fewer than 165 innings from each of its top five starters, and featured a deep lineup led by NL MVP Kris Bryant. In the bullpen, two-time All-Star Davis is capable of replacing closer Chapman if he's healthy. Among the Cubs' regular position players, only Zobrist and new center fielder Jay are over 30 ' everyone else is either entering or in the midst of his prime. This is a strong outlook.
|ST LOUIS: 2016: 86-76, second place
Manager: Mike Matheny (sixth season)
Who's new? OF Dexter Fowler, C Eric Fryer, LH Brett Cecil
Who's gone? 1B Brandon Moss, OF Matt Holliday, OF Jeremy Hazelbaker, RHP Jaime Garcia, RHP Seth Maness, RHP Jerome Williams
Projected lineup: CF Dexter Fowler (.276, 13 HR, 48 RBI, 13 SB with Cubs), SS Aledmys Diaz (.300, 17, 65), 1B Matt Carpenter (.271, 21, 68), RF Stephen Piscotty (.273, 22, 85), C Yadier Molina (.307, 8, 58), 3B Jedd Gyorko (.243, 30, 59), 2B Kolten Wong (.240, 5, 23), LF Randal Grichuk (.240, 24, 68)
Rotation: RH Carlos Martinez (16-9, 3.04 ERA), RH Adam Wainwright (13-9, 4.62), RH Mike Leake (9-12, 4.69), RH Michael Wacha (7-7, 5.09), RH Lance Lynn (did not pitch - Tommy John surgery)
Key relievers: RH Seung-hwan Oh (6-3, 1.92 ERA 19/23 SV), LH Kevin Siegrist (6-3, 2.77), RH Trevor Rosenthal (2-4, 4.46, 14/18 SV), LH Brett Cecil (1-7, 3.93 with Blue Jays), RH Jonathan Broxton (4-2, 4.30), RH Matt Bowman (2-5, 3.46), RH Miguel Socolovich (1-0, 2.00)
Hot spots: Rotation. The back end looked like a big leap of faith when spring training began. Wainwright and Wacha are coming off their worst seasons. Another 2013 World Series mainstay, Lynn, didn't pitch last season as he recovered from Tommy John surgery. Then, on the first day of camp, 22-year-old right-hander Alex Reyes learned he needed Tommy John himself. That leaves a lot of question marks after ace Martinez ' more than any Cardinals staff has faced in years.
Outlook: This 40-man roster hints at a team in transition. Venerable 34-year-old catcher Molina is still St. Louis' biggest star. Reyes' injury hurts the youth movement, but the Cardinals are still stacked with talented 20-something sluggers ' Piscotty, Diaz, Gyorko and Grichuk ' who could emerge as household names. Adding Fowler's speed and patience should complement an already deep lineup. The pitching staff is a different matter. Barring a big resurgence from Wainwright, Lynn and Wacha (or a big trade) it's hard to see the Cardinals contending for more than a wild card spot in the Cubs' shadow.
|Cubs, on verge of clinching division, visit St. Louis|
It took a little while for the Chicago Cubs to get going this season after ending 108 years of frustration by winning the World Series last fall.
Now, the Cubs are on the verge of completing the first step toward defending their long-awaited championship -- winning a division title.
Chicago takes a magic number of two for clinching the National League Central into the opener of a four-game series against the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium on Monday.
The Cubs (87-68) were 43-45 and 5 1/2 games behind the Milwaukee Brewers at the All-Star break. They are 44-23 since the break and have been in sole possession of first place since beating the Arizona Diamondbacks on Aug. 13.
Milwaukee (82-74) sits 5 1/2 games back, and St. Louis (81-74) is six games back. Because the Brewers are idle Monday, the earliest the Cubs can clinch is Tuesday.
Chicago might have been able to clinch Monday if it completed a four-game sweep at Milwaukee. Instead it won three of four, taking the first two games in extra innings before Jose Quintana struck out 10 during a three-hitter during a 5-0 win Sunday.
Ben Zobrist is among those looking forward to clinching in front of Chicago's biggest rivals.
"It will be nice to do it there, I'll just say that," Zobrist said. "We have to win the games. It's a big series.
"We intend to clinch there, and I think for a lot of guys who have been around here for a long time, it'll be very satisfying."
Since scoring three times and getting swept in a three-game series at home against Milwaukee, the Cubs are 10-2 in their past 12 games. Three of those wins occurred Sept. 15-17 at Wrigley Field against St. Louis.
St. Louis is on the verge of being eliminated from the division race but is still alive in the wild-card chase. The Cardinals are 2 1/2 games behind the Colorado Rockies (84-72) for the second NL wild card.
The Cardinals rebounded from getting swept by winning four consecutive games, but they were outscored 15-7 in losing the final two games of their three-game series at Pittsburgh over the weekend.
"We just have to keep playing until mathematically you're out of it," St. Louis outfielder Tommy Pham said. "That's how you have to look at it. It's a very tough situation. We need some luck."
The Cardinals also need some better hitting. Matt Carpenter homered Sunday, but the offense went 3-for-15 with runners in scoring position in the two losses to Pittsburgh.
Another area not helping St. Louis is its performance against the Cubs. The Cardinals are 4-11 in the season series, hitting .222 and pitching to a 4.11 ERA in those games.
"We've got to find a way to win, and we've got to play them better," Carpenter said. "We haven't had enough to beat them to this point."
Besides potentially clinching, the Cubs would like to see Jon Lester (11-8, 4.56 ERA) finish the regular season well. He is 3-1 this month but owns a 5.91 ERA in his past four starts heading into a Monday outing at St. Louis.
The left-hander last pitched Wednesday when he allowed seven runs and eight hits in 4 1/3 innings at Tampa Bay. Lester also owns a 5.11 ERA since the All-Star break while working around a brief DL stint.
Lester is 1-1 with a 3.28 ERA in four starts against St. Louis this season. For his career, he is 4-4 with a 2.36 ERA in 13 starts against St. Louis.
Luke Weaver (7-1, 2.05 ERA) opens the series for St. Louis. He is on a seven-game winning streak, the longest by any St. Louis rookie since Ted Wilks in 1944 and the longest by any Cardinal since Matt Morris in 2001.
Weaver kept the streak alive by allowing two runs on five hits in five innings during a 9-2 win at Cincinnati on Wednesday. He has struck out at least seven in seven straight starts.
"For a young guy, he doesn't make a lot of mistakes in the middle of the plate," Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said of Weaver. "He's making quality pitches. It is fun to watch."
Weaver is facing the Cubs for the first time this season and making his fourth appearance against a contending team this season. He lost to the Arizona Diamondbacks on July 27 but struck out 18 in 12 innings during a pair of starts against Milwaukee last month.
The right-hander's only start against the Cubs occurred Aug. 13, 2013, in Chicago when he allowed two runs and four hits in four innings during a no-decision.
|Last Updated: 3/21/2018 4:12:23 AM EST|