Pregame Notes: Cubs, Arrieta square off against Mets at Wrigley


Tonight, the Chicago Cubs (20-34) begin a three-game set against the New York Mets (28-29), a club that finds itself just 3 1/2 games out of first in the National League East – a division that is separated by just 6 1/2 games from top to bottom – in hopes of clawing its way back closer to .500 in the first week of June.

Right-hander Jake Arrieta (1-1, 3.20 ERA) will take the mound for Ricky Renteria’s club in the opener, looking to continue his strong start to the year at the Friendly Confines. In five-plus innings pitched at Wrigley, Arrieta has not allowed a run – a streak he would certainly like to see continue into Tuesday’s contest against New York. His last start on May 27 against the San Francisco Giants was a six-inning, four-run effort in a 4-0 Cubs’ loss.

He will be opposed by a young Mets right-hander in the form of Zack Wheeler (2-5, 4.31 ERA) who has struggled somewhat this season. Last year, the right-hander tossed 6 1/3 innings, adding nine punch outs on the road in Philadelphia, leading New York to a 4-0 win. Last season, which was Wheeler’s first big league campaign, he went 7-5 with a 3.42 ERA in 17 starts.

Tonight’s game will be broadcast on CSN in the Chicagoland area and WGN 720 AM will carry the radio call. First pitch is slated for 7:05 p.m. in Chicago.

Here are tonight’s lineups: