MLB Baseball

Final 1 2 3   4 5 6   7 8 9   R H E
St. Louis0 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 241
Chi Cubs0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 191
  W: R. Helsley (2-0)   L: D. Phelps (2-1)   S: C. Martínez (22)
11:20 AM PT12:20 PM MT1:20 PM CT2:20 PM ET14:20 ET18:20 GMT2:20 11:20 AM MST1:20 PM EST1:50 PM VEN22:20 UAE1:20 PM CT, September 20, 2019
Wrigley Field, Chicago, Illinois  Attendance: 39,106

Cardinals, Cubs gear up for round two of critical series

According to STATS
According to STATS

St. Louis Cardinals at Chicago Cubs

  1. The Cardinals and Cubs play one another seven times in their final 10 games, with four games at Wrigley Field this weekend followed by three in St. Louis to close the season. The Cubs are 6-0 against the Cardinals at Wrigley in 2019 -- their longest single-season home winning streak in the series since taking the first seven meetings in 2006.
  2. St. Louis leads the majors with a 2.83 ERA this month and has four shutouts -- no other team has more than two in September.
  3. Paul Goldschmidt has a team-high 16 RBI this month and leads all of baseball with 17 walks in September in 17 games. He had 15 walks in 50 games in June and July.
  4. Jack Flaherty, the scheduled starter for the opener, has a 1.05 ERA since the All-Star break, currently besting Bob Gibson's 1.19 second-half ERA in 1968 for the lowest in franchise history dating to the first All-Star Game in 1933 (min. 70 innings pitched after break).
  5. The Cubs counter with Kyle Hendricks, who has a 1.75 ERA at home. His 2.56 career ERA in 80 games at Wrigley Field trails only Lon Warneke's 2.48 ERA for the lowest at Wrigley since 1920 among pitchers that have made at least 60 starts there.
  6. Nicholas Castellanos hit his 56th double of the season Wednesday, and now has seven in his last six games to go with eight RBI and nine runs. He is the only Cub in the live-ball era to record at least seven doubles, eight RBI and nine runs in a six-game span, and joins Joey Votto from 2009 as the only NL players to do it in the divisional era.
Notes Applicable For Series Dates: 9/19/2019 thru 9/22/2019

Time is running out on the Chicago Cubs to make a run at the postseason.

Chicago (82-71) will try to bounce back from an extra-innings loss against St. Louis (86-67) when the teams meet Friday afternoon for the second installment of a pivotal four-game series at Wrigley Field.

The Cubs are four games behind the Cardinals for the National League Central division lead and one game back of the Milwaukee Brewers for the NL's second wild-card berth.

Only nine games remain in the regular season for each team.

"It's definitely a different position than we're used to these last couple years, but let's write our own story," Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant told reporters. "We can make this a really cool story if we take advantage of this series and the rest of the games we have against the Cardinals as well as against the Pirates."

It won't be easy.

The Cubs had planned to start veteran southpaw Cole Hamels on Friday, but he was scratched one day earlier because of left shoulder fatigue. Hamels is expected to skip one turn in the rotation and start next week instead.

"If Cole says he's hurting, he's hurting," Cubs manager Joe Maddon told reporters.

That means Cubs right-hander Alec Mills (1-0, 3.42 ERA) will make his third start of the season and fifth start of his career. The 27-year-old Tennessee native made a pair of starts in mid-July before returning to a bullpen role.

Mills likely will be on a pitch count with fellow right-hander Tyler Chatwood available in a long-relief role. Mills is 0-0 with a 4.50 ERA in two relief appearances against the Cardinals in his career, allowing two runs in four innings.

"In a weird way, having this great depth that's able to cover these particular maladies, I think we're covered," Maddon said.

The Cardinals will turn to veteran right-hander Michael Wacha (6-7, 4.76), who is set to make his 23rd start of the season. The 6-foot-6 Texan is coming off a solid performance against the Brewers on Sunday in which he scattered five hits over five scoreless innings.

In 19 career games (17 starts) against the Cubs, Wacha is 4-8 with an unsightly 6.68 ERA. He has not pitched well at Wrigley Field, going 1-4 with a 6.11 ERA in nine games (eight starts).

The Cardinals could be without second baseman Kolten Wong, who left Thursday's game in the fifth inning because of what the team later described as a left hamstring injury. Wong grabbed his leg as he tried to run out a ground ball.

Meanwhile, the Cubs will wait to see whether first baseman Anthony Rizzo is available to play for the second game in a row. Rizzo returned unexpectedly Thursday from a sprained right ankle and belted his 27th homer.

St. Louis was 0-6 in Chicago this season before holding on for an extra-innings win in the series opener.

"This is a different team that we're bringing in than some of those other teams coming in here," Cardinals manager Mike Shildt said. "I feel good about what we're bringing. I think we've grown. There's no question. This team has gotten better as the season's gone on. That's what we do."

--Field Level Media

Updated September 20, 2019

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