The Arizona Diamondbacks are heading to the north side of Chicago to take on the young talented Cubs. The D-Backs are coming off a split series in Colorado where they were able to win two out of the four games in the series.
The Cubs have been a great story this year and are currently holding onto the second National League Wild Card spot. Chicago sits with a record of 75-57, which is good for third in the NL Central behind the Pittsburgh Pirates and the St. Louis Cardinals. The Cubs might be having a good year overall, but they enter this series only winning four of their last 10 games.
Here are the pitching matchups in this series…
Friday September 4, 11:20 AM
Zack Godley vs. Jon Lester
Aug 3, 2015; Washington, DC, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Zack Godley (52) throws to the Washington Nationals during the second inning at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports
Godley’s last start came back on August 3 against the Washington Nationals and he was very good. He tossed six shutout innings while only allowing three hits and struck out six. Both as a starter and reliever this year, Godley has a 4-0 record with a 1.90 ERA.
Manager Chip Hale has said that Godley will get this start and one more afterward and then he will be shifted into the bullpen to limit his innings.
August 29, 2015; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Jon Lester (34) pitches the first inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
Lester is coming off of a rough start against the Los Angeles Dodgers on August 29. Lester went six innings, allowed five runs on eight hits and struck out seven. The big acquisition for the Cubs this past offseason has been good, but not great. He sits with an 8-10 record with an ERA of 3.59. But everybody, including the D-Backs, should not underestimate how good Lester can be on any given day.
A game note to take into account is that Paul Goldschmidt will miss this game against Chicago due to the birth of his first child. However, he is expected to play in Saturday’s game.
Saturday September 5, 11:20 AM
Robbie Ray vs. Jake Arrieta
Aug 31, 2015; Denver, CO, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Robbie Ray (38) delivers a pitch during the first inning against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports
Ray had a very good start against the Rockies, but was once again on the receiving end of some misfortune. Ray went 5 2/3 innings, only gave up one run on five hits and struck out eight. Ray exited the game with a 4-1 lead, but that lead slipped away in the ninth inning as Brad Ziegler and Matt Reynolds combined to give up four runs in the inning, giving Colorado the 5-4 victory.
Ray still has not been named the winner in a game since July 7 and his record still sits at 3-10 with a 3.72 ERA.
Aug 30, 2015; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Jake Arrieta (49) reacts after thawing his final pitch of the ninth inning for a no hitter against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium. Cubs won 2-0. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
Arrieta, of course, made history in his last start as he threw a no-hitter against the Dodgers in what was an absolute masterful performance. Arrieta struck out 12 Dodgers during his no-hitter and made it look easy.
Arrieta is the major league leader in wins with 17 and is also sporting a fantastic 2.11 ERA.
Sunday September 6, 11:20 AM
Rubby De La Rosa vs. Kyle Hendricks
Aug 10, 2015; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Rubby De La Rosa (12) throws in the third inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports
De La Rosa pitched game two of the double-header on Tuesday and pitched well. He lasted six innings, while giving up three runs on six hits and struck out three. De La Rosa earned another quality start, his sixth during this past month. He earned his 12th win of the season, which leads the team.
Aug 26, 2015; San Francisco, CA, USA; Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Kyle Hendricks (28) pitches the ball against the San Francisco Giants during the first inning at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
Hendricks is coming off a decent start against the Reds. He pitched five innings, gave up three runs on five hits and struck out four but the Cubs went on to lose that game 13-6.
In 26 starts this season, Hendricks is 6-6 with a 4.15 ERA. He has never faced the D-Backs before in his career, which could mean that he can take advantage of hitters who have never seen him.