Pregame Notes: Jake Arrieta, Chicago Cubs set to take on the Mets


After dropping their second straight series to the Milwaukee Brewers over the weekend, the Chicago Cubs redeemed themselves by defeating the N.L. East-leading New York Mets, 4-3 behind Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo.

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Both men went back-to-back in the very first inning of the ballgame – Bryant breaking in the left field bleachers with a solo bomb that nearly hit their new video board while Rizzo took the very next pitch deep to right field. Soon enough, fans will be gathering for home run balls in that area of the stadium.

For the third straight outing, Jon Lester was able to record a win but had himself a scary moment after giving up back-to-back home runs himself late in the game. Lester (3-2, 4.10 ERA) allowed three earned runs on five hits while issuing three walks and striking out six before handing things over to this struggling bullpen.

Fans in attendance were on edge for the remainder of the game with the Cubs (16-15) holding onto a one-run lead, but Justin Grimm, Zac Rosscup, and Hector Rondon were able to get the job done with the help of their defense. Shortstop Starlin Castro and Addison Russell managed to turn a game-ending double play in the ninth inning despite Chicago’s young second baseman mishandling the ball.

Rizzo had himself an unassisted double play earlier in the game after snagging a hard hit ball hit in his direction, then stepping on first base to record the second out of the play.

Tonight, Chicago Cubs’ skipper Joe Maddon will send ace pitcher Jake Arrieta to the mound, in hopes of taking game two of this four-game set. Arrieta (3-3, 3.41 ERA) has lost his two previous starts against the Brewers and St. Louis Cardinals to begin the month of May, including one at home.

So far this month, Arrieta has been hit hard by opposing hitters, as he’s given up a combined eight earned runs on 16 hits (one home run) but has posted a 13/2 K/BB ratio across 10 1/3 frames.

While Arrieta tries to get himself back on track, the New York Mets (20-12) will send their top prospect in Noah Syndergaard to the mound. Syndergaard (0-0, 0.00 ERA) will be joining the field with a handful of Chicago’s own rookies, hoping to make a solid impression against this lineup that seems to be finding their groove in a losing effort.

The former Toronto Blue Jays hurler was traded to the Mets back in December 2012 in exchange for R.A. Dickey, Josh Thole, and Mike Nickeas in a deal that involved a total of seven players. He began the year with their Triple-A affiliate in Las Vegas, starting the year with a 3-0 record and a 1.82 ERA before being promoted.

Here’s a look at the lineups for both teams:

First pitch is slated for 7:05pm central time and will be aired live on both CSN+ and WBBM 780.

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