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7/27 Cubs to face 4 lefties

The Cubs will face four left-handed starters when the Rockies come to town, starting Monday night. So far, the Cubs have faced 18 southpaw starters all season. Expect to see some different lineups as manager Rick Renteria does some mixing and matching. Switch-hitting Emilio Bonifacio could start at third instead of left-handed hitting Luis Valbuena.

– Carrie Muskat

7/27 Minor matters

Javier Baez hit a three-run homer in the first but it wasn’t enough as Iowa lost, 5-4, to Memphis in the first game of a doubleheader. Dan Straily took the loss, giving up five runs over five innings. Jorge Soler went 2-for-3 in his third game, hitting a double. Kyuji Fujkikawa threw one inning in relief, giving up two hits and walking one. In the second game, Baez connected again, hitting a three-run homer in the first but again it wasn’t enough as Iowa lost, 6-4. Josh Vitters also homered. Baez leads Iowa with 19 home runs and 73 RBIs.

Addison Russell hit his sixth home run and third in the last two games in Tennessee’s 7-4 win over Birmingham in 10 innings. Russell led off the fourth with his blast. Taylor Davis drove in five runs, hitting his second home run. He also hit two doubles.

Daytona won the first game of a doubleheader against St. Lucie, 6-3. Felix Pena got the win. Jacob Hannemann had three hits in his first game with the team. In the second game, Hannemann had three hits again, and stole his second base of the day. Tayler Scott picked up the win in the 9-1 victory, throwing five shutout innings.

Shawon Dunston had two hits but it wasn’t enough as Kane County lost, 7-5, to West Michigan.

Dillon Maples gave up four runs, one earned, on three hits over three innings in Boise’s 7-6 win over Everett.

Mesa had the day off.

7/27 Hendricks to make 3rd start

Kyle Hendricks has had two days to watch the Cardinals prior to his start Sunday for the Cubs. That should help the right-hander, who will be making his third big league start.

“This is a very bright young man who has shown us that he can pitch,” manager Rick Renteria said of the right-hander. “He knows how to use the skills he has, he knows how to apply a game plan, I think he knows how to read what hitters are trying to do with him. I think he makes adjustments. This is a great challenge. I’m sure he’s not thinking of anything other than him going out there and doing what he’s supposed to do. It’ll be a fun match up.”

Hendricks has to face the Cardinals’ ace, Adam Wainwright.

“I think he’s been able to slow things down,” Renteria said of the rookie. “That is something you worry about with young players. He goes into it with a pretty calm demeanor and has a real good idea of how he wants to go about his business. I think that’s preparation.”

– Carrie Muskat

7/27 Cubs vs Rockies

After the Cubs’ series against the Cardinals, they will play host to the Rockies for four games at Wrigley Field. Here are the pitching matchups:

Monday: LHP Tsuyoshi Wada (0-1, 5.00) vs. LHP Yohan Flande (0-2, 7.20)
Tuesday: RHP Edwin Jackson (5-11, 5.68) vs. LHP Jorge De La Rosa (11-6, 4.19)
Wednesday: LHP Travis Wood (7-9, 5.06) vs. LHP Brett Anderson (1-3, 3.24)
Thursday: RHP Jake Arrieta (5-2, 2.18) vs. LHP Tyler Matzek (2-4, 4.28)

7/27 Cubs lineup

Kyle Hendricks gets the start Sunday in the Cubs’ series finale against the Cardinals. Here’s the lineup:

Bonifacio 2B
Alcantara CF
Rizzo 1B
Castro SS
Valbuena 3B
Coghlan LF
Castillo C
Sweeney RF
Hendricks P

7/26 Cardinals 6, Cubs 3

* Jake Arrieta did not get a decision Saturday, but did record his ninth consecutive quality start. He gave up two runs on five hits while walking one and striking out six over six innings. He’s 1-0 with a 1.21 ERA (3 ER/22 1/3 IP) in four-career starts against the Cardinals. Arrieta has a 1.01 WHIP, which ranks fourth in the NL among pitchers with at least 80 innings.

* Starlin Castro (1-for-4) has now reached base safely in 35 of his last 39 games since June 23.

* The Cubs’ bullpen has a 7.07 ERA in its last four games, giving up 11 earned runs over 14 innings.

* Saturday’s attendance of 41,927 topped Friday’s crowd of 41,534 and was the largest crowd at Wrigley Field this season.

* The Cubs have given up multiple first-inning runs in four-straight games (nine total).

* Nate Schierholtz tied the game with a pinch-hit, solo home run in the bottom of the sixth. It was the Cubs’ first pinch-hit homer since Schierholtz delivered on July 23, 2013, at Arizona.

* Emilio Bonifacio has hit safely in each of his five games since returning from the disabled list, and each of his last seven home games (.429/12-for-28).

* Ryan Sweeney hit a solo homer in the eighth, his second homer in as many games. It’s the first time in his career he’s hit in back to back games.

7/26 Minor matters

Chris Rusin gave up three runs over eight innings in Iowa’s 3-2 loss to Memphis. Javier Baez hit his 23rd double and drove in his 67th run. He has hit safely in 18 of his last 19 games.

Addison Russell hit two home runs and Luis Flores added his third of the season but it wasn’t enough as Tennessee lost, 9-8, to Mississippi. Russell drove in four runs and was batting .250. He now has six multi-hit games with the Smokies.

Daytona’s game against St. Lucie was postponed because of rain. The two teams will try to play doubleheaders Saturday and Sunday.

Jeimder Candelario had three hits, including two doubles, and drove in four runs in Kane County’s 7-2 win over South Bend. Shawon Dunston had three hits and one RBI.

Danny Canela had two hits, including a solo home run, in Boise’s 3-1 loss to Everett in the first game of a doubleheader. Trevor Graham gave up two earned runs over six innings. Boise lost the second game, 2-1. Charcer Burks had two hits.

Mesa totaled three hits against the Giants in a 6-2 loss. Ivan Pineyro gave up four runs over two innings.

7/26 Parker up, Ramirez to rest

The Cubs recalled Blake Parker from Triple-A Iowa and optioned Neil Ramirez to the Minor League team. The move was not done because of Ramirez’s performance but it will give the right-hander a breather and the big league team a fresh arm. Ramirez, 25, is 1-1 with three saves and a 0.96 ERA in 33 relief outings for the Cubs this season. The Cubs may do the same with Brian Schlitter and Justin Grimm as well.

– Carrie Muskat

7/26 Cubs lineup

Jake Arrieta takes the mound Saturday as the Cubs try to make it two in a row against the Cardinals. Here’s the lineup:

Bonifacio 2B
Alcantara CF
Rizzo 1B
Castro SS
Valbuena 3B
Coghlan LF
Castillo C
Sweeney RF
Arrieta P

7/26 Extra bases

* Luis Valbuena, who hit a game-winning two-run homer Friday against the Cardinals, is batting .345 (10-for-29) with seven extra-base hits against the Cardinals this season. According to Elias, Valbuena’s seven extra-base hits (4 2B, 1 3B, 2 HR) are the most by any player against St. Louis this season.

* Wesley Wright has a 0.63 ERA (1 ER/14 1/3 IP) in 17 games against NL Central division foes this season. Neil Ramirez has posted a 0.68 ERA (1 ER/13 1/3 IP) in 13 relief outings.


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