arizona diamondbacks vs chicago cubs predictions and preview

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MLB arizona diamondbacks vs chicago cubs predictions and preview


 

 

Image licensed from USA Today Sports

The Chicago Cubs will play the final game of a 3-game series in the desert southwest on Sunday when visiting Chase Field to take on the Arizona DiamondbacksChicago was defeated by Arizona in the opening game of the series on Friday 4-3 and the Cubs have lost seven of the last 9. Ildemaro Vargas hit a two-run triple, while Rafael Ortega hit a sacrifice fly that accounted for all three Cubs’ runs. Drew Smyly suffered the loss after allowing 10 hits and four runs in six innings. Chicago is 11-20 and the Cubs are 9 games behind the front running Milwaukee Brewers in the National League Central.Arizona is one of the hottest teams in baseball after defeating the Chicago Cubs Friday. Arizona has won eight of the last 10. Ketel Marte collected three hits in Friday's victory and one RBI and Zach Davies threw five plus innings to help lead Arizona to the victory. Arizona has already won seven one-run games this season. The Diamondbacks are 18-15 and three games behind the front-running Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres in the National League West. First pitch is schedule for 410pm EST.

 

Cubs struggles begin but don't end on the mound

Chicago is 23rd in baseball in team ERA at 4.23, 24th in WHIP with 1.34 and opposing hitters are averaging .251 at the plate against Cubs’ pitching which is 26th. Through the first 31 games of the regular season, Chicago Cubs starting rotation has only four Quality Starts which is 28th in baseball. Kyle Hendricks is the leader in strikeouts with 30. Chicago will send lefty Justin Steele to the mound on Sunday.

 

 

 

Chicago is also struggling at the plate with a team batting average of .235 that is 16th in baseball and a .360 slugging percentage that is 22nd. The Cubs have 123 runs scored which is 21st. Patrick Wisdom has five home runs in 16 RBIs to lead Chicago in both, while first year Japanese star Seiya Suzuki has four home runs and 16 RBIs but is questionable for Sunday. Chicago has 78 extra-base hits with 51 doubles, five triples and 22 home runs through the first 31 games.

Injury Report: Chicago has 9 pitchers on its injury list as well as position players Nick Madrigal, Clint Frazier, David Bote and Andrelton Simmons amongst others.

 

Pitching is keeping Arizona close

Arizona is 3 games over .500 thanks to strong performances on the mound. The Diamondbacks are 10th in team ERA at 3.53 and 14th with a 1.22 WHIP. The starting rotation for Arizona has nine Quality Starts which is 15th in baseball and opposing hitters are averaging .236, which is 19th. Merrill Kelly is the leader in strikeouts for Arizona with 38. Humberto Castellanos gets the nod on the mound Sunday for Arizona. The Mexican right-hander is 2-1 with an ERA of 4.32 and 16 strikeouts.

 

At the plate, Arizona has had its problems producing effectively as the Diamondbacks are 29th or next to last in team batting average at .203, 24th in on-base percentage at .292 and 23rd in slugging percentage at .359. Arizona's most productive hitter has been first baseman Christian Walker with 7 doubles, 6 home runs in 14 RBIs. Walker is tied for first in both home runs and RBIs with Daulton Varsho. Ketel Marte is batting only .222 but has a team-best of 12 doubles. Arizona has 90 extra-base hits with 51 doubles, four triples and 35 home runs through the first 33 games

Injury Report: Arizona has four pitchers on its injury list as well as catcher Carson Kelly.





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