The Chicago Cubs will host the Cincinnati Reds as the NL Central foes resume a three games series Saturday afternoon from Wrigley Field. The Reds will give the nod to 24-year old right-hander Tyler Mahle, and the Cubs will counter with 32-year old right-hander Yu Darvish. The Reds lead the season series 3-1 which included a 6-5 win on Friday.
Mahle Shuts Out Dodgers in First Win of Season
Tyler Mahle will get the call for the 11th time of the year, aiming for his second straight win. Mahle came through with one of his best performances of the season last time out, tossing six shutout innings against the Dodgers, leading to the win to lift his record to 1-5. The young right-hander was sharp in three of his four starts this month, and he features a 3.51 ERA and a terrific 1.17 WHIP in 41.1 innings logged. He has fared well in his three career starts against the Cubs, registering a stifling 2.41 ERA and a 2-1 record. Wilson Contreras is 2 for 8 against Mahle, while Anthony Rizzo is 1 for 8, and Javier Baez is 4 for 8.
— Cincinnati Reds (@Reds) May 24, 2019
Derek Dietrich has quietly been one of the Reds best hitters this month, belting seven homers with 13 RBI’s. The seventh-year left fielder owns a .240 average with 12 home runs and 27 RBI’s on the season. Dietrich is 2 for 13 against the Cubs this season, and he has hit two home runs in his last four games.
The Reds are scoring an average of 4.10 runs per game, ranking them 22nd overall. The Cincinnati pitching has been a bright spot, carrying a 3.50 team ERA, good for third in the big leagues. The Reds own an 11-16 road record entering Friday’s play.
Darvish Still Hunting for First Home Win
Yu Darvish will get the starting nod for the 11th time of the season, seeking his first victory since late April. Darvish tallied the Quality Start in his latest outing, holding the Phillies to three runs in six innings, resulting in a no-decision in a game the Cubs lost 5-4. The veteran right-hander is turning the corner after a rocky start to the season, although he still owns a poor 5.06 ERA and a 1.56 WHIP accompanied with a 2-3 record in 48 innings pitched. He battled the Reds last week and held them to just two runs in 5.1 innings in a no-decision, and he is 2-0 with a 2.25 ERA in four career meetings against Cincinnati. Joey Votto is 2 for 10 against Darvish, while Yasiel Puig is 0 for 2, and Eugenio Suarez is 1 for 7.
— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) May 23, 2019
Anthony Rizzo was out of the lineup against the Reds last week, however, he drove in 14 runs against the Reds last season. The 29-year old first baseman is on a roll, clubbing four home runs with nine RBI’s in his last six games. Rizzo is currently hitting .279 with 14 home runs and 38 RBI’s on the season.
The Cubs deep lineup stands third in the Majors with an average of 5.42 runs per game. The Chicago pitching staff features a 3.64 team ERA, positioning them fifth in the Major Leagues. The Cubs feature a 17-9 record at Wrigley Field.
The Cincinnati Reds are:
- 5-1 in their last 6 Saturday games.
- 5-2 in their last 7 games against a right-handed starter.
The Chicago Cubs are:
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