Now that Carlos Gomez has finally been traded, there's a good chance the Milwaukee Brewers' offensive woes could linger for at least one more night with Jason Hammel set to face them.
Trying to record his first victory in almost eight weeks for the visiting Chicago Cubs, Hammel looks to remain undefeated against the reeling Brewers on Friday night.
A day after a proposed deal that had Gomez headed to the New York Mets fell through, the All-Star center fielder and right-hander Mike Fiers were sent to AL West-leading Houston on Thursday for four prospects.
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"I know (the Brewers are) trying to rebuild, and if they trade me, they can get a lot of good prospects," Gomez told MLB's official website.
Having traded veteran slugger Aramis Ramirez earlier this month, Milwaukee (44-59) has totaled 19 runs and posted a .279 on-base percentage while losing seven of the last nine. Gerardo Parra is batting .460 during a career-high 14-game hitting streak but trade rumors continue to persist leading up to Friday afternoon's deadline.
After managing six hits for a second consecutive contest in Thursday's 5-2 series-opening defeat, the Brewers don't expect to have an easy time opposite Hammel (5-5, 3.20 ERA) - 6-0 with a 2.25 ERA in eight starts against them.
Though the right-hander has a 3.46 ERA while going 1-0 against Milwaukee this season, he earned that victory by yielding two runs and striking out eight in seven innings of a 7-6 win at Miller Park on May 8.
Hammel, however, is 0-3 with a 4.10 ERA and has received 11 runs of support in eight starts since winning at Washington on June 6. He'll try to rebound from giving up a season-high six runs and eight hits in 3 2-3 innings of an 11-5 loss to Philadelphia on Sunday.
"My role (Sunday) was just garbage, unacceptable," Hammel said.
Teammate Anthony Rizzo was 5 for 38 with one home run in his previous 10 games but went 3 for 4 and belted a go-ahead three-run homer in the eighth inning Thursday.
"The whole night, it wasn't going our way," Chicago manager Joe Maddon, whose team scored all its runs in the final two innings. "But I liked the way we worked."
Rizzo is batting .429 with six home runs and 15 RBIs in during a 13-game hitting streak against Milwaukee.
Dexter Fowler has batted .388 and drawn 16 walks while reaching base safely in 14 consecutive contests.
Two games out of the NL's final wild-card spot, Chicago (54-47) is trying to win three in a row for the first time since sweeping the Mets at Citi Field from June 30-July 2.
The Cubs will get their first look at Taylor Jungmann (5-2, 2.14), who has allowed two or fewer runs in all but one of nine starts since making his major league debut June 9. However, he was hardly satisfied after yielding a pair of first-inning runs and striking out seven but walking four while throwing a season-high 107 pitches over six in Saturday's 2-0 loss at Arizona.
"It was just a frustrating outing," said the right-hander, who has walked 19 in 59 innings.
Parra is batting .360 (9 for 25) when facing Hammel, but Jean Segura is 1 for his last 9 and Ryan Braun is hitless in his last six at-bats against him.