The Chicago Cubs have lost 4 of their last 5 games but have secured a playoff berth despite dropping their most recent game to Pittsburgh 3-2 on Wednesday evening. The pesky Pirates needed a home run in the bottom of the 9th inning to eventually knock off the Northsiders of Chicago.
The Cubs will send right-hander Alec Mills (5-4, 4.14) to face Pirates right-hander Chad Kuhl (1-3, 5.03). Mills faced the Pirates on Sept. 13th going 5.0 innings giving up 4 earned runs. Kuhl last faced the Cubs on Sept. 1st going 4 innings and surrendering 3 earned runs.
The series finale on Thursday will serve as the last meeting between these two teams. Chicago needs a win in order to earn the series split against Pittsburgh.
Chicago Offense SlumpingThe Cubs have been struggling on offense on and off this 2020 season. Most recently they have only scored nine total runs in their last five games. Chicago ranks 20th in runs scored and 27th in batting average as the offensive woes continue to linger over the 2020 Northsiders.
Chicago was held to one run on five hits on Wednesday in the loss to the Pirates. The Cubs are 32-24 overall with a 13-10 away record. After allowing back-to-back home runs Wednesday night Kyle Hendricks retired 22 of the next 24 batters. The offense can't seem to put anything together as of late. This was the 25th time in 56 games with three runs or fewer.
Right-hander Alec Mills will be making his 11th start on the season and has thrown 58.2 innings of work and has a 4.14 ERA with 44 strike outs. In his latest meeting on Sept. 19th Mills surrendered six hits and four earned runs in an 8-1 loss against the Twins.
Pittsburgh Looks to Finish StrongThe Pittsburgh Pirates season was likely over before it started, but losing 13 of their last 16 games has not been a fun experience for the organization. However, they knocked off the Cubs in their last two games and seek to win the four game series Thursday afternoon.
The Pirates are 17-39 overall with a 12-19 home record but are 30-24 as an underdog this season. Trevor Williams made his final start of the season Wednesday and the result was something he and the organization hope to build on.
Thursday afternoon Chad Kuhl will make his third start of the season against the Cubs this year alone. In his last start against Chicago Kuhl lasted 4.0 innings giving up 6 hits on 4 earned runs.
- Pirates are 16-40 in their last 56 games as an underdog
- Cubs are 60-27 in their last 88 Thursday games.