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Dusty Baker Brings First-Place Reds To Town To Face Cubs

Well, this is a turnaround.

Dusty Baker, who was unceremoniously dumped as Cubs manager after a 96-loss season in 2006, and whose first two seasons as Reds manager were also losing years, now has his Reds in first place, 9.5 games ahead of the Cubs entering a four-game series at Wrigley Field today.

If the Cubs want to keep their admittedly extremely slim hopes of getting back into the NL Central race alive, they'll need to take at least three of four this weekend, and preferably, sweep the Reds. Given that the Cubs have not won more than two consecutive games in more than a month, this seems a tall order.

Carlos Silva, whose 8-2 record is best on the staff, will face the Reds' Travis Wood, who is making his major league debut today. Game time is 1:20 Central; the game can be seen on CSN Chicago.