The Chicago Cubs just enjoyed their first scheduled Sunday off during a homestand in the 98-year history of Wrigley Field and will now face the Boston Red Sox for just the fourth time in regular-season history when they open a three-game series in Boston on Monday. The Cubs dropped both ends of a doubleheader over the Washington Nationals on Saturday but won their last two road series. The Red Sox are returning after a 4-6 road trip.
Chicago scored 12 runs in taking the first two games of the series from the Nationals but managed a total of two in the doubleheader to close out a 4-6 homestand. The last-place club is opening up an 11-game trip at Boston and is visiting Fenway Park for the second time since losing the 1918 World Series in six games. Boston scored more than three runs for the third time in the last 15 games in its 8-5 victory over the Yankees on Sunday as top prospect Mookie Betts made his major-league debut.
TV: 7:10 p.m. ET, CSN Chicago, NESN (Boston)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Cubs RH Jake Arrieta (4-1, 2.05 ERA) vs. Red Sox RH Jake Peavy (1-6, 4.93)
Arrieta is one of the pleasant surprises in Chicago this season and has picked up the win in three straight starts. The 28-year-old notched 29 strikeouts and two walks while allowing three runs in 21 innings over those three outings. Arrieta was not so sharp against Boston back when he was a member of the Baltimore Orioles and posted a 0-3 record with a 5.90 ERA in six appearances (five starts) against the former division rivals.
Red Sox manager John Farrell was noncommittal about Peavy making the start after the veteran was hammered for seven runs on eight hits in five innings at Seattle on Tuesday. Eventually Boston decided to send down right-hander Rubby De La Rosa and give Peavy a chance to earn his first win since April 25. The Alabama native has surrendered a total of six home runs in his last four outings.
1. Red Sox 3B Xander Bogaerts is 6-for-66 in his last 18 games.
2. Chicago LF Junior Lake is 0-5 with a pair of strikeouts since returning from a minor head injury.
3. Boston 2B Dustin Pedroia went 6-for-7 in the back-to-back wins on Saturday and Sunday.
PREDICTION: Cubs 5, Red Sox 2