Usually, the Cubs would love a series against the Pirates to get back on track. But seeing as the Cubs have dropped 7 of 9 meetings to the Pirates in 2010, it is more of a dreaded visit than anything at Wrigley Field this week. The Cubs have fallen to 33-42 overall this season, so the pressure is on to string some wins together to back into the NL Central race (they trail the Reds by 8.5 games) and the NL Wild Card race (they trail the Mets by 10 games).
The Pirates have been downright bad this year, except when they play the Cubs. They are currently riding a 6-game losing streak, this after recently suffering through a 10-game skid in early June. The Pirates have not won on the road since May 25th. That doesn’t mean much though as the Cubs have really struggled hitting against the Pirates this season – scoring just 27 runs with a team batting average of .227 overall in the series.
Randy Wells looks to rebound after a series of bad outings. He is suffering through a sophomore slump – 3-6 record; 5.21 ERA and 1.50 WHIP. Not good.
The Cubs avoided the sweep against the White Sox this weekend by winning Sunday’s finale 8-6. They are still reeling, however, from the whole Carlos Zambrano-Derrek Lee incident from Friday at US Cellular Field. It’s not clear when Big Z will rejoin the team, but it’s clear that he has lost his starting spot in the rotation. Can the Cubs build off the turmoil and rally together to put together a few wins before the All-Star Break? I doubt it…