The Cubs (40-32) were able to salvage the final game of their three-game set with the Miami Marlins Sunday thanks to a quality pitching effort by Alec Mills and the Cubs outstanding bullpen. Chicago’s hitting continues to struggle badly, however, averaging just two runs a game the last eight.
Now they welcome another team that has struggled to score in a Cleveland (38-30) ballclub whose offense ranks 20th in OPS and has just the 17th most runs scored in baseball. They do have a big bat in the form of slugging third baseman José Ramírez, author of 16 home runs and a .890 OPS.
Cleveland has suffered numerous pitching injuries, especially to ace Shane Bieber, which has earned them a very pedestrian 4.21 ERA. Not what you’re expecting from a quality pitching staff like Terry Francona has shepherded over the years.
The former World Series participants should be motivated after dropping two of three to the lowly Pirates. Of course, the Cubs also just dropped a series to a last-place Marlins team, so things might be pretty even in the series.
Chicago’s brutal June schedule has one more vicious 10-day stretch ahead of it starting with this series and moving through LA and Milwaukee. They have survived the gauntlet mostly intact, but every single win is huge. If they make it through in the thick of the race they should be able to perhaps add at the trade deadline and then who knows from there.
Game Time and Broadcast Info
- Monday, June 21 at 7:05pm CT on Marquee
- Tuesday, June 22 at 7:05pm CT on Marquee
What to Watch For
- Kris Bryant has gone one for his last 14 at the plate since getting hit in the hand during the Mets series.
- Hendricks has won his last seven starts and is on a nice little roll.