Thursday’s one-game slate featuring the Houston Astros and Texas Rangers was an appetizer for the beginning of the second half of the season. An afternoon matchup between the Pittsburgh Pirates (44-45) and Chicago Cubs (47-43) opens up the action on Friday.
How to Live Stream Pirates vs Cubs
Yu Darvish’s first pitch from Wrigley Field is set for 2:20 p.m. ET. The game will air on MLB Network, but will also be available to stream via the MLB Streams subreddit.
The scrappy Adam Frazier will lead things off for the Pirates, followed by the solid 2-3-4 punch of rookie Bryan Reynolds, Starling Marte and All-Star first baseman Josh Bell. Melky Cabrera gets a start in right field as Corey Dickerson is still nursing a groin injury.
Chris Archer takes the ball today and looks to turn around his season after a very disappointing first half. He is 3-6 with 5.49 ERA and has allowed 20 home runs in just 78.2 innings.
Kyle Schwarber’s power bat remains in the lead off spot followed by a couple of All-Stars in Javier Baez and Kris Bryant. Victor Caratini gets the nod behind the dish to sneak in another day off for Willson Contreras, who lost a day of rest to the All-Star game.
Darvish is on the mound for the Cubs and is 2-4 with a 5.01 ERA. He too has surrendered 20 home runs, but has thrown 97 innings. If the wind is blowing out at Wrigley today, it could be a short outing for both starters.
The Pirates sit just 2.5 games behind the first place Cubs. For being one game under the .500 mark, the Pirates are in a very good position to gain ground on the underachieving Cubs.