Coming off a 2-4 road trip that ended with a 3-game sweep at the hands of the Arizona Diamondbacks, the Cubs are hoping a return home to the Friendly Confines will help break them out of their funk. The quick 6-game homestand begins tonight as the Cubs take on the New York Mets.
Left-hander Travis Wood (1-3, 4.14 ERA) will take the mound in the series opener, looking to build on his strong start last Tuesday against the White Sox. Wood recorded his first win as a Cub, going 6 innings and giving up just 1 earned run, while striking out 5.
The Mets counter with a lefty of their own, as Johan Santana (5-3, 3.00 ERA) tries to win his third consecutive start for a team that is just 3.5 games out of 1st place in the NL East.
Tonight's Cubs lineup is dominated by right-handed bats, with third baseman Luis Valbuena being the sole lefty. Of course, that will all change tomorrow night, with the arrival of top prospect Anthony Rizzo. Cub fans are hoping this is one of the last lineup cards manager Dale Sveum will have to fill out without inclusion of the 22 year-old first baseman.
1. Reed Johnson RF
2. Darwin Barney 2B
3. Starlin Castro SS
4. Alfonso Soriano LF
5. Jeff Baker 1B
6. Geovany Soto C
7. Joe Mather CF
8. Luis Valbuena 3B
9. Travis Wood P
Some sad news is being reported out of Hamilton, Ontario.
Former Blackhawks goaltender Ray Emery was identified by first responders and friends as the victim in an early morning drowning at the Hamilton Harbour, according to photojournalist Andrew Collins.
"They went out for a swim and unfortunately he did not emerge after diving in," Insp. Marty Schulenberg told the Hamilton Spectator before Emery was reportedly identified. "We responded along with Hamilton Fire and EMS. Unfortunately, our efforts on the water and in the area just around the piers were met with negative results."
Emery played in the NHL for 10 seasons, two of which came with the Blackhawks from 2011-13.
On April 2013, Emery and Corey Crawford won the William M. Jennings Trophy, awarded to the goaltender who allows the fewest goals in the season.
Emery finished the 2012-13 Stanley Cup-winning campaign with a 17-1 record, 1.94 GAA, and .922 save percentage.
NBCSportsChicago.com preps reporter "Edgy" Tim O’Halloran spotlights 100 high school football teams in 100 days. The first 75 team profiles will focus on teams making strides across Chicagoland and elsewhere in the state. Starting July 30, we’ll unveil the @NBCSPrepsTop 25 Power Rankings, leading up to kickoff on Friday, Aug. 24.
School: Chicago Ag Science
Head coach: Shawn Finnin
Assistant coaches: Craig Dovich Vince Patterson KJ Jones Richard Price
How they fared in 2017: 6-4 (5-1 CPL Chicago Great Lakes Conference). Chicago Ag made the Class 4A state playoff field and lost to Rochelle in opening round action.
2018 Regular Season Schedule:
Aug. 24 @ Lindblom
Aug. 31 vs Hubbard
Sept 7 vs King
Sept. 14 @ Harlan
Sept. 21 @ Julian
Sept. 28 vs Marshall
Oct. 4 vs Goode
Oct. 13 @ Urban Prep Englewood
Oct. 19 vs Orr
[MORE: 41 Days to Kickoff - Bogan]
Biggest storyline: Can the Cyclones keep winning in a new conference (CPL Illini Windy City) starting this year?
Names to watch this season: TE Tony Stafford and OL Kam Williams
Biggest holes to fill: The Cyclones will need to replace 8 starters on defense lost to graduation.
EDGY's Early Take: The Cyclones had a historic season in 2017 making the IHSA state playoff field for the first time in school history. With the recent success comes a "move up" to the Illini division this fall. Look for Ag Science to rely on an experienced offense (seven starters) including four returning starters on the Cyclones offensive line from a year ago.