Chicago Cubs Lineup (4/4/21): Davies Makes Cubs Debut, Happ Returns, Sogard Starting 2B

After getting the day off yesterday, Ian Happ returns to the Cubs lineup batting leadoff and playing center. Willson Contreras bats second today at catcher followed by Anthony Rizzo at first, Kris Bryant at third, Joc Pederson at left, and Javier Baez at short. Jason Heyward bats seventh playing right and Eric Sogard makes his Cubs debut hitting eighth and playing second base.

Zach Davies is on the mound at Wrigley for the first time as a Cub, though he’s very familiar with the ballpark from his years in Milwaukee. His repertoire is similar to that of Kyle Hendricks and he’s been similarly undervalued throughout his career, but we have to hope Davies will get better results than his Opening Day predecessor.

Facing the Cubs is 25-year-old Mitch Keller, who had a solid performance in abbreviated action last year after a rough debut campaign in 2019. He features a mid-90’s fastball with a slider and cutter, though he had real trouble commanding them last season.

If he’s able to get ahead in counts, those breaking pitches may allow him to rack up strikeouts. Failing to find the zone early, however, will allow the Cubs to sit dead red. Lefty batters carry a .931 OPS and .396 wOBA into this one when facing Keller, so I’m calling a Joc Jam. Maybe two.

First pitch is set for 1:20pm CT on Marquee Sports Network and 670 The Score.

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