It’s a gimmick, but it should be a fun one, at least.
The Cincinnati Reds and the Chicago Cubs are slated to do basebattle on a field formerly of corn in the middle of Iowa this evening, serving as the opposing squads for Major League Baseball’s Field of Dreams Game. It’ll be televised nationally on FOX, they’ll be wearing some old-timey 1919 uniforms, and despite both clubs being mired in exhausting rebuilds and frustrating seasons, it should make for an enjoyable exhibition that counts, if nothing else.
Fresh of being ranked as the #20 prospect in all of baseball by Baseball America, Nick Lodolo will toe the rubber for the Reds first on the night. The 24 year old lefty has pitched to a tidy 3.81 ERA in 6 starts since returning to the Reds off the injured list, though his 4.43 FIP and 15 walks issued in 28.1 IP stand a bit lower than the expectations for his precision given how he was able to dominate the strike zone at all previous levels. At least he has posted 39 Ks in that span, showing that his breaking ball has truly put opposing hitters in the spin cycle more often than not.
He’ll be opposed by Drew Smyly of the Cubs, the veteran lefty who has had just about as Drew Smyly of a season as a Drew Smyly could be expected to have.
Reds hitters have collectively posted a 97 wRC+ against LHP so far this season, somehow better than the 92 wRC+ from the collective Cubs. So, there’s that.
First pitch is set for 7:15 PM ET. Get your...popcorn ready.
Tonight’s Cubs 9:— Jordan Bastian (@MLBastian) August 11, 2022