It’s been more than three weeks since the Chicago Cubs won a home game.
That came against the Pittsburgh Pirates, who happened to enjoy some rare success at Wrigley Field last month.
Looking to avoid a seventh consecutive home defeat, the Cubs welcome the Pirates, who are trying for a season-high third straight win, back to Chicago on Monday night.
The Cubs won three of their first four 2022 home games, but are 1-10 there since. That lone victory came over Pittsburgh 21-0 on April 23. However, Chicago was outscored 12-8 in losing the three other games in that home set.
The Cubs suffered home losing streaks of nine and 13 games in 2021.
“The only thing we can control is the way we come and go about our business,” Chicago’s Willson Contreras told Marquee Sports Network. “Come down here, day in and day out, and do our best.”
Chicago, however, returns home looking for its third straight victory following a 4-2 road trip at San Diego and Arizona.
Meanwhile, Pittsburgh’s only 2022 winning road series came at Chicago, where prior to that series, it had lost 21 of 24. The Pirates return to the North Side looking for a third consecutive victory following a 4-3 homestand against the Los Angeles Dodgers and Cincinnati.
Pittsburgh made some interesting history Sunday, when it became the sixth team in baseball’s modern era to win without recording a hit. Ke’Bryan Hayes’ eighth-inning RBI fielder’s choice produced the only run in the Pirates’ 1-0 victory over the Reds.
“Winning a major league game is really hard,” Pirates manager Derek Shelton said.
“We’ll take the win. Sometimes they don’t look the same, but they count the same.”
The Pirates managed just six runs during that four-game set with Cincinnati. However, starters Zach Thompson and Jose Quintana pitched 13 scoreless innings in the last two contests. Pittsburgh starters have a collective 2.97 ERA over the last eight games.
Pittsburgh, who will start Dillon Peters (3-1, 1.83 ERA) for Monday’s series opener, is 4-2 versus Chicago this season despite its starters going 0-2 with a 5.32 ERA in those games.
Peters, meanwhile, is 3-0 with a 0.00 ERA in four career meetings (one start back in 2018) against the Cubs.
Meanwhile, Hayes, batting .301 on the season, is 4-for-6 against scheduled Cubs starter Wade Miley (0-0, 9.00 ERA). Recovered from an elbow issue, the left-hander looks for a better outing after he gave up three runs, five hits and five walks over three innings of a 5-4 loss at San Diego in his long-awaited Cubs’ debut on Tuesday.
“I let myself get frustrated, get angry,” Miley, who turns 37 in August, told the Cubs’ official website. “I’m not a good angry pitcher, so I’ve got to find a way to calm down out there.
“I’m just hoping I respond well.”
Miley is 4-4 with a 3.64 ERA in 13 career starts against the Pirates.
Contreras went 0-for-9 with four strikeouts at Arizona, but is hitting .387 with a homer, four doubles and eight RBIs in his last eight games versus Pittsburgh.
–Field Level Media