Chicago Cubs Lineup (5/17/24): Tauchman Leads Off, Happ Bats Second, Bellinger in RF, Hendricks Starting

The Cubs didn’t do much against fireballing righty Jared Jones last night and things don’t get any easier this afternoon against Paul Skenes. I’m changing format a little due to time and the fact that they just faced the top pitching prospect in baseball a few days ago. Skenes routinely tops 100 mph with a nasty slider and a splinker that can really mess with hitters. Lord help his opponents as he gains experience and confidence.

Kyle Hendricks is making his second start off the IL after beating Pittsburgh last week with his best performance of the season. Not that the bar was set very high. The Cubs could really use a steadying force as they look to even the series and head into the weekend with a chance to gain ground on the Brewers.

It’s really concerning that Nico Hoerner is out of the lineup for the third straight game, especially since he went through a standard pregame workout yesterday. Though it’s par for the course, it’s always frustrating to see the Cubs drag their feet and play shorthanded when it comes to injury designations. Maybe he’ll be available off the bench today before starting both Saturday and Sunday to alleviate the anxiety.

Mike Tauchman is leading off as the DH and Ian Happ is batting second, which says more about the rest of the lineup than it does him. Cody Bellinger is in right as Seiya Suzuki gets a break that may or may not have to do with whiffing on a routine liner last night. Christopher Morel cleans up at third, Michael Busch is across the diamond, Miles Mastrobuoni is at short, and Nick Madrigal is at second. Pete Crow-Armstrong patrols center and Miguel Amaya is the catcher.

First pitch is at 1:20pm CT on Marquee and 670 The Score.

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