The Cubs managed to take two of three from the Reds despite struggling hitters and sloppy defense and are now at 26-19, in excellent shape to make the eight-team crapshoot that is the National League playoff. There are just 15 games left this season and David Ross‘s team has a lot to work on.
The heart of the Cubs batting order continues to massively under-perform expectations. Meanwhile, the pitching staff after Yu Darvish and Kyle Hendricks is a question mark. Recent games have often felt like spring training contests, giving everyone on the roster starts and trying countless bullpen configurations.
Chicago makes their only trip to Milwaukee this weekend for a three-game set to face the Brewers (19-22), who are two games back of the final playoff spot. Other than a 19-run outburst Wednesday, their offense has taken a step back. Josh Hader is as dominant as ever at the back of the bullpen, though, and that’s what’s driven their success over the last few seasons.
The Cubs have had problems with the Brewers the last few years and are 3-4 this season, but they have a chance to badly damage their rivals’ playoff hopes. Don’t get me wrong, I would love to see that, but honestly I just want them to play better overall. If they do that, then the rest takes care of itself.
Game Time and Broadcast Info
- Friday, September 11 at 7:10pm CT on Marquee
- Saturday, September 12 at 6:10pm CT on Marquee
- Sunday, September 13 at 1:10pm CT on TBS and Marquee
What to Watch For
- Willson Contreras is heating up at the plate and had four hits Thursday.
- Ian Happ is probably thrilled the Reds are gone. The Cubs leadoff man went 1-13 with 10 strikeouts against Cincinnati.
- Hendricks has allowed just two total runs in his last two starts (14 IP).