Chicago Cubs, Arrieta ready for Wild Card rematch against Pittsburgh

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The last time the Chicago Cubs’ Jake Arrieta set foot on the field at PNC Park, he ousted the Pirates from the playoffs with a 4-0 shutout.


The Chicago Cubs got a solid start from Jason Hammel, who lasted just long enough to qualify for the win in last nights 7-2 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates. With Jason Heyward nursing a sore wrist, it was Matt Szczur who filled in for him. Now he’s on the 15-day DL with a tight hamstring and no one else may want to volunteer to play right field tonight.

The Cubs (18-6) recalled Ryan Kalish to take Szczur’s spot on the roster who injured the hamstring on the double steal in the fifth inning. The Cubs will be down a few players, but with NL Pitcher of the Month Jake Arrieta (5-0, 1.00) they might not need much. Arrieta won the honor for the third consecutive month–a first for an NL pitcher–and looks to recapture the magic he had last fall.

The Pirates (15-11) are only four games back, but the Cubs refuse to drop two games in a row as they went the entire month of April without doing so. The Bucs will look to Jonathon Niese (3-0, 5.08) to hold the Cubs at bay–pun intended–as they try to even the series up at one apiece.

Niese hasn’t lost but carries an inflated ERA after a five run, five inning outing at Coors Field. His luck against the Cubs hasn’t gone well as he’s 3-6 with a 4.76 ERA in 10 starts against them. Kris Bryant will get the start in right field for the injured Heyward as Jorge Soler starts in left field. Tim Federowicz will get the call behind the plate.

Here are the lineups for tonight’s matchup:

First pitch is scheduled for 6:05 p.m. CT at PNC Park. MLBN will have the television coverage for those out-of-market, while WPWR will have it locally. 670 The Score will have the radio broadcast. Be sure to check back after the game for postgame coverage!