Friday, August 29, 2014
Series preview: Cubs at Cardinals
By Jesse Rogers
The Chicago Cubs and St. Louis Cardinals play a four-game series this weekend beginning on Friday night.
Friday: Kyle Hendricks (5-1, 1.78) vs. Shelby Miller (8-9, 4.26), 7:15 p.m.
Saturday: Felix Doubront (0-0, 0.00) vs. Justin Masterson (2-2, 7.43), 1:15 p.m.; Tsuyoshi Wada (4-1, 2.56) vs. TBD, 7:15 p.m.
Sunday: Travis Wood (8-11, 4.72) vs. John Lackey (2-1, 4.50), 1:15 p.m.
Storylines: Doubront makes his Cubs debut on Saturday after struggling with the Boston Red Sox and in the minors for the Cubs before being called up for this game. The Cubs hope to get his career back on track with a new team. Hendricks has been nothing short of fantastic as he's already beaten playoff-caliber teams including the Los Angeles Dodgers and Baltimore Orioles. Will the Cardinals be next?
Rizzo's health: Anthony Rizzo missed the past two games after tweaking his lower back on Tuesday night. When he's ready to play again fans will get to see him, Jorge Soler, Javier Baez, Starlin Castro and Arismendy Alcanatara all in the lineup together for the first time. That should be five of the starting eight position players entering the 2015 season.
Who's Hot/Who's Not: Soler has exploded on the scene with four hits in eight at-bats, including a home run on his first swing in the big leagues. After missing five games due to a family tragedy, Starlin Castro is 5-for-12 and remains one shy of his career high in home runs (14). Javier Baez was 1-for-13 in Cincinnati over the past three days. His average has dipped to .189 after striking out two more times on Thursday.