Cubs Game Notes For Friday @ St. Louis

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* The Cubs lost two of three against the Brewers, including back-to-back shutout losses. Despite dropping those two games, the Cubs’ 8-4 record in June is the third best in NL and their overall season +89-run differential is the best.

* The Cardinals faced three teams currently in last place in their past three series (Marlins, Reds, and Padres) and went 4-5 in those games, while being outscored 45-36. Starting with the Cubs today, St. Louis will play 19 consecutive games against teams that currently have a winning record.

* St. Louis has defeated the Cubs four times in five games this season with each of its four victories coming by two runs or less. The Cardinals are 20-12 (.625) in games decided by two runs or less, good for the third-best record in the National League.

* In 16 career starts against the Cardinals, Jon Lester has a 2.22 ERA. Among pitchers who have thrown over 100 career innings against the Cardinals, Lester’s ERA ranks third behind Gary Gentry (2.04) and Dennis Martinez (2.18) in the live-ball era (since 1920).

* Michael Wacha has gone at least 5.0 innings while allowing two or fewer runs in each of his last 10 starts. The last Cardinal pitcher with a longer such streak was Adam Wainwright with 12 straight from September 1 – August 30, 2009.

* Anthony Rizzo has a .297/.382/.527 slash line since May 18, after previously slashing .195/.301/.358 up until that point. In his career, Rizzo is a .450 hitter (18-for-40) with three home runs and seven RBI against Wacha.

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