The Chicago Cubs send Jon Lester to the hill in hopes of ending the nine-game West Coast trip with a win.
Nine games in ten days against teams on in the National League West. So far, the Chicago Cubs (82-46) are 5-3 on this road trip, which closes on Sunday against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
On Saturday, the Cubs missed opportunities in the first and seventh innings to put pressure on the Dodgers, but squandered their chances. Jason Hammel pitched two and one-third innings, making it two short appearances in a row. Jon Lester takes the mound on Sunday, hoping to score another win and add to his Cy Young resume.
More from Chicago Cubs News
- Cubs should keep close eye on non-tender candidate Cody Bellinger
- Cubs starting pitching has been thriving on the North Side
- Make no mistake: the Cubs are very much about power hitters
- Cubs: It’s time to start thinking about potential September call-ups
- Cubs: P.J. Higgins deserves to be in the lineup on a daily basis
To say the second half of the season has been outstanding for Lester (14-4, 2.81 ERA) would be an understatement. In his last seven starts, Lester is 5-0 with a 2.28 ERA. Additionally, he as struck out 46 batters in 43 1/3 innings.
Aside from that, he allowed three home runs, compared to 16 before the All-Star break. The month of August has been his most impressive, especially compared to the struggles he faced in July.
Los Angeles sends out Illinois-native rookie pitcher Brock Steward, hoping to see improvement and throw several innings. On August 14, Stewart entered the game versus the Pittsburgh Pirates in the top of the second inning. He pitched three innings, allowing one run on two hits, walking four and striking out two.
However, in his two starts (at Milwaukee and at Colorado), Stewart pitched a combined nine innings and allowed 14 runs. Opponents hit .370 against the rookie right-hander. If the Cubs offense gets started early, it will be another short outing for Stewart.
The series finale will air on TBS starting at 3:10PM Eastern time.
Player to Watch?
In the series finale, keep an eye on Anthony Rizzo. He has never hit well at Dodger Stadium, or the Dodgers (72-57) for that matter. The last month, Rizzo is hitting .344, but only has four home runs since in the second half of the season. For his career, he hits a home run every 20.8 at-bats. That average is 38.25 since July 10. He is due.
For this game, we will be hosting another “Live Thread” chat. Check back to this article during the game and talk with our staff! We will be on starting at 2:45PM Eastern.