The Chicago Cubs visit the St. Louis Cardinals on Friday for a four-game series to end the regular season. The Cubs were eliminated from playoff contention on Wednesday after Milwaukee won its game. Chicago followed that with a loss to Pittsburgh 4-2 and has lost eight straight games down the stretch. Speculation has already started that manager Joe Maddon may not return for next season.
St. Louis lost its second straight on Wednesday after falling to the Arizona Diamondbacks 9-7. Cardinals’ starter Michael Wacha was taken out during the second inning due to tightness in this throwing shoulder. The Cardinals led 5-2 in the seventh, but gave up seven runs in the bottom of the inning. The loss narrowed the Cardinals lead in the National League Central to 1 ½ games over Milwaukee.
Anthony Rizzo is leading the Cubs with a .293 batting average. Kris Bryant leads in hits with 153. Kyle Schwarber leads in home runs with 37 and Anthony Rizzo in RBIs with 94. As a team, Chicago is averaging .252 at the plate. Chicago has not yet announced its starting pitcher for Friday’s opening game of the four-game series against the Cardinals.
Kolten Wong is leading the Cardinals with a .285 batting average. Paul Goldschmidt is the leader in home runs with 33, RBIs with 95 and hits with 151. As a team, the Cardinals are averaging .245 at the plate. On Friday, the Cardinals will send Dakota Hudson to the mound. The right-hander is 16-7 with an ERA of 3.45, 126 Ks and 81 BBs.