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#Cubs and Hammel face Cards

Jason Hammel gets the start on Tuesday night at Wrigley Field for the second game of the Cubs’ three-game series against the Cardinals. Willson Contreras will start at catcher for the second straight game. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. CT. Here’s the lineup:

Coghlan LF

Heyward RF

Bryant 3B

Rizzo 1B

Zobrist 2B

Contreras C

Russell SS

Almora CF

Hammel P

The Cubs are 13-4 in their last 17 home games, and 25-9 at Wrigley Field this season.

Hammel is coming  off one of his best outings. He held the Nationals to one run on five hits over seven innings in his last start, striking out four. He has not walked a batter in his last two starts and has a 2.26 ERA.


#Cubs Minor League report

Monday’s games

Rob Zastryzny gave up four runs over six innings in Iowa’s 5-4 win over Memphis. John Andreoli had two hits, both doubles, and scored two runs.

It’s All-Star break time for Tennessee, Myrtle Beach and South Bend.

Manuel Rondon gave up one hit over five scoreless innings in Eugene’s 6-0 win over Hillsboro. Andruw Monasterio hit a two-run homer in the third. Tyler Payne and Yeiler Peguero each had two hits.

Kevin Zamudio and Luis Ayala each hit home runs in Mesa’s 5-3 win over the Brewers. Ayala hit a go-ahead three-run inside the park homer while Zamudio hit a two-run homer in the eighth. Yapson Gomez threw three innings for the win.

#Cubs and Lackey face Cardinals

John Lackey will open a three-game series against the Cardinals on Monday night at Wrigley Field. Rookie Willson Contreras gets his first Major League start, one day after hitting a home run on the first pitch he saw in his first ML at-bat. Here’s the lineup:

Zobrist 2B

Heyward RF

Bryant LF

Rizzo 1B

Contreras C

Baez 3B

Russell SS

Almora Jr. CF

Lackey P

This is the Cardinals’ first trip to Wrigley Field this season, the latest they’ve made their initial visit to Chicago since 2008. St. Louis is 18-34 all-time in night games at Wrigley, winning six of the last nine.

Lackey beat the Cardinals in St. Louis on April 18, and did not get a decision in a 4-3 loss on May 23. He’s making his 401st career start and is coming off a no decision vs. the Nationals in which he gave up two runs over six-plus innings.


#Cubs Minor League report

Sunday’s games

Iowa lost, 4-3, to Memphis. Pierce Johnson gave up three earned runs over 3 1/3 innings. Munenori Kawasaki had two hits and one RBI.

Tennessee lost, 4-0, to Memphis. Jen-Ho Tseng gave up one earned run over six innings. He now has a 1.48 ERA in his last five starts.

Ian Happ had three hits, including a two-run homer, in Myrtle Beach’s 4-3, 11-inning loss to Potomac. Jeremy Null gave up three runs over five innings. Jason Vosler and Andrew Ely each had two hits.

South Bend defeated Lake County, 3-1, to clinch a playoff berth and the Eastern Division first-half title. Kyle Miller gave up one run over seven innings. Eloy Jimenez had two hits, both doubles, and two RBI.

Eugene lost, 6-4, in 13 innings to Boise. Jose Paulino threw five shutout innings, striking out five. Wladmir Galindo hit two home runs and Yeiler Peguero had twho hits, including a home run, and two RBI.

The Mesa Cubs begin their season Monday night against the Brewers.

#Cubs benefit concert raises $400,000

Friday night’s Hot Stove Cool Music concert for Theo Epstein’s Foundation To Be Named Later raised more than $400,000, and featured a surprise performance by Pearl Jam front-man Eddie Vedder. Vedder took the stage at The Metro in Wrigleyville, joining an all-star roster of Chicago and Boston musicians who stepped up to the plate for Chicago-area youth. This was the fifth Chicago FTBNL benefit concert.

Vedder joined Epstein, Hall of Fame baseball writer Peter Gammons, Cubs broadcaster Len Kasper and an all-star lineup featuring Grammy-nominated singer/songwriter Liz Phair, Smashing Pumpkins drummer Jimmy Chamberlin, Latin Grammy nominated jazz musician/former New York Yankee Bernie Williams, JC Brooks & The Uptown Sound, and Avid Dancer.

#Cubs and Hendricks face Pirates

Kyle Hendricks gets the start Sunday night when  the Cubs face the Pirates in the series finale at Wrigley Field. Dexter Fowler, who came out of Saturday’s game with a sore hamstring, underwent an MRI on Sunday. Manager Joe Maddon said they were trying to decide if Fowler needed to go on the DL. Chicago is 7-1 against Pittsburgh this season. Here’s the lineup:

Coghlan LF

Heyward CF

Bryant RF

Rizzo 1B

Zobrist 2B

Montero C

Russell SS

Baez 3B

Hendricks P

*NOTES: Willson Contreras will make his first start Monday night, catching veteran John Lackey.

#Cubs Minor League report

Saturday’s games

Iowa lost, 6-4, to Memphis. Drew Rucinski gave up six runs over five innings and took the loss. Dan Vogelbach and Matt Murton each had two hits and one RBI.

Tennessee lost, 9-8, to Jackson. Tyler Skulina gave up seven runs over 1 2/3 innings. Billy McKinney had three hits and one RBI, and Bijan Rademacher had two hits and scored two runs.

Myrtle Beach swept a doubleheader against Potomac. Gleyber Torres had two hits, including a solo homer, in the first game. Ian Happ was a combined 4-for-6 with three doubles, a walk, a run scored and one RBI in the two games. Erick Leal gave up five hits over six scoreless innings for the win in the nightcap.

South Bend lost, 6-4, in 10 innings to Lake County. Ian Rice and Donnie Dewees both homered, and Eloy Jimenez extended his hitting streak to 13 games with two more hits.

Matt Rose hit a walk-off RBI single in the 11th to lift Eugene to a 2-1 victory over Boise. Chris Pieters had three hits.

The Mesa Cubs open their season Monday.

#Cubs and Lester face Pirates

Jon Lester gets the start Saturday night at Wrigley Field when the Cubs play host to the Pirates in the second game of a three-game series. First pitch is scheduled for 7:15 p.m. CT and the game will be broadcast on FOX. Here’s the lineup:

Fowler CF

Heyward RF

Bryant LF

Rizzo 1B

Zobrist 2B

Baez 3B

Russell SS

Ross C

Lester P

Lester is the reigning NL Player of the Week. Cubs starting pitchers have given up three or fewer earned runs in 20 straight games, posting a 1.65 ERA in that stretch while going 12-4. Since 1920, only three times have Cubs starting pitchers strung together stretches of 20 or more games having allowed three or fewer earned runs: 31-straight starts in 1992; 22-straight in 1946; and 20-straight in 1945.

The Cubs are 16-6 in their last 22 games, and the 45-20 record is the best start since going 46-19 in the first 65 games of 1918.



#Cubs Minor League report

Friday’s games

Iowa lost, 7-6, to Memphis. Aaron Brooks gave up six earned runs over three innings in his second rehab start. Kristopher Negron had two hits and one RBI. Cael Brockmeyer had two hits in his first game with Iowa.

Tennessee lost both games of a doubleheader against Jackson, and lost both in walk-off fashion. Duane Underwood gave up one run over four innings in the first game, and Starling Peralta threw four shutout innings in the second. It was Peralta’s first start, and he gave up one hit and struck out three.

Myrtle Beach was swept by Potomac in a doubleheader. Jonathan Martinez gave up two runs over 5 1/3 innings in the first game and Zach Hedges gave up three earned runs over five innings in the night cap. Ian Happ was a combined 3-for-7 with a double, triple and two RBIs. Gioskar Amaya had two hits in the second game.

South Bend gave up three runs in the eighth to lose, 4-3, to Lake County. Eloy Jimenez extended his hitting streak to 12 games with a two-hit effort. Casey Bloomquist gave up one run over seven innings. He has a 1.69 ERA over his last three starts.

Dylan Cease gave up one run over four innings in Eugene’s season opener, a 6-1 win over Boise. Matt Rose hit a two-run homer in the first inning. Andruw Monasterio, Kevonte Mitchell and Robert Garcia each had two hits.

#Cubs Draft pick Hatch starts in CWS

The Cubs will be keeping an eye on the College World Series Saturday as pitcher Thomas Hatch gets the start for Oklahoma State against UC Santa Barbara in Omaha. Hatch, the Big 12 Conference Pitcher of the Year, was the Cubs’ third round pick in the MLB Draft, and his teammate, pitcher Trey Cobb, was selected by Chicago in the 12th round.

Hatch missed the 2015 season because of a sprained UCL but was Oklahoma State’s Friday night starter this year. He went 8-2 with a 2.04 ERA, and threw three complete games. He worked at least six innings in 14 of his 17 starts. In Big 12 games, he was 4-2 with a 2.45 ERA and threw two shutouts in eight starts.

He did not give up an earned run over 38 2/3 consecutive innings. Hatch also finished the season with 102 strikeouts, and is the 13th pitcher in OSU history to record 100 Ks in a season.

In 2015, Cobb led the Cowboys with 31 appearances, and compiled a 2.61 ERA. The right-hander struck out 53 over 58 2/3 innings, and opponents batted .221 against him. This year, he made 22 appearances, including 14 as a starter. He finished fourth in the Big 12 with 95 strikeouts over 75 2/3 innings, and fanned 13 over six innings against Michigan and struck out 12 in a row against Baylor.

This is the Cowboys’ 20th College World Series appearance.

— Carrie Muskat


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