Scouting report: Cubs vs. Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park
By Bruce Miles
Cubs vs. Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park
NBC Sports Chicago Tuesday; WGN Wednesday
The Cubs' Jon Lester (12-3) vs. Jameson Taillon (7-7) Tuesday; Cole Hamels (5-9 with Texas) vs. Nick Kingham (5-5) Wednesday. Both games 6:05 p.m.
At a glance:
The Pirates (55-52) have made a charge in the NL Central, jumping over the Cardinals and into third place. Their disabled list is crowded, however. Top hitter Corey Dickerson (.318/.351/.517) is out until the end of the week with a hamstring injury. Also on the DL are Josh Bell, Sean Rodriguez and Chad Kuhl. It's possible the Prates could pull off a trade by Tuesday's nonwaiver deadline. On the field, Gregory Polanco leads the Bucs with 18 homers and 58 RBI. The Pirates are a middle- to bottom-half team in most offensive and pitching categories. Hamels makes his first start since his trade from Texas last week. The Cubs continue to lead the NL in runs scored, batting average and on-base percentage. Their team ERA of 3.76 ranked fourth in the NL entering Monday, but the bullpen was carrying the load with a 3.21 ERA compared with 4.14 for the starters.
San Diego Padres at Wrigley Field, Thursday-Sunday