As you start your Tuesday, here are the things you need to know as a Cubs fans to make sure you can talk Cubs around the water cooler. Then again, do people still do that? Nonetheless, here are your five things for this Tuesday morning.
1. The Cubs lost the opening game of a five game series with the Reds at Great American Ballpark last night – Edwin Jackson took the mound, which usually means an automatic loss, and pitched a little better than normal Jackson. By no means do I say he had a good game, but he was respectable and kept us in the game through six innings of work. It was the combined two inning effort of Blake Parker and James Russell that put the game out of reach as they allowed five earned runs. Justin Ruggiano and Chris Coghlan both continue to hit, especially Ruggiano. He’s got his split line up to .290 / .365 / .473 and has been an interesting surprise this season. At this point, he may have more value than someone like Nate Schierholtz on the trade market.
2. There is a double header today, but rain is in the forecast – A quick check of weather shows rain all day, including a 2-3 hour window right before game two. I’ll be surprised if both of these games get played two without any delay or even get played at all. It’s already a makeup game, so you’d like to see us get them in, but I’m not hopeful. My guess would be the issue will come with the first game as most of the heavy rain is scheduled for this afternoon. A long delay in that game would seriously mess up the start time of the second game since they have to clear the stadium and re-admit new fans.
3. Starters from the farm are coming – The probable Cubs starters have been filled in on their website. We’re scheduled to see the Major League debut of both Tsuyoshi Wada and Kyle Hendricks as well as a second edition of the Dallas Beeler experiment. I’m excited to see what all three bring to the table. If I had to predict, I’m looking for Hendricks to have the best outing among the three.
4. Down on the Farm – Javier Baez hit his 14th home run of the season for the Iowa Cubs. I continue to believe he’ll be the odd man out among the core three shortstops in the organization that is traded for front line starting pitching. Newly acquired starting pitcher, Dan Straily made his Cubs debut and tossed five innings, allowing four runs (all unearned) and got the no decision. Jorge Soler also hit another home run, his second in two days since returning from the DL. It’s easy to forget about Soler because of the injuries, but when he’s healthy, he’s a legit prospect.
5. Listen to Joe talk about the state of the team on ESPN Radio is Des Moines – I was on as part of my regular appearance on their afternoon show and talked about the current team as well as what we can expect going forward. You can listen to the spot here. It’s about a 12 minute listen and I’d love feedback in the comments section on it.
That should get you set for your day in Cubs. Remember to check back this afternoon as Noah will be chiming in with what the recent trade means for the farm going forward.