The Cubs are coming home a different team, returning to Wrigley Field for the first time without Matt Garza and Alfonso Soriano.
The players who take the field against the Brewers on Monday won't exactly resemble the squad that won two of three games in Milwaukee in late June. Since that series, Chicago has also shipped out Scott Feldman, Scott Hairston and Carlos Marmol, rebooting once again as sellers at the Trade Deadline.
And Cubs manager Dale Sveum has been left to deal with the fallout from the roster turnover.
"It's not as much of a challenge for me as always making sure you have the depth to fill the voids that happen sometimes," Sveum said. "[Chris] Rusin has filled in with two great starts, and we have [Carlos] Villanueva. We have a lot more depth than we did last year."
But it isn't just about filling names into a depth chart. In the case of Soriano, the Cubs lost a veteran leader and mentor.
"Losing Soriano is a big blow on a lot of different scales than losing your four-hitter," Sveum said.
The new-look Chicago roster will begin a seven-game homestand Monday, as right-hander Jeff Samardzija toes the rubber against divisional opponent Milwaukee.
The Brewers will send Kyle Lohse to the mound as the righty looks for his third straight victory. Lohse held the Padres to one run on five hits and no walks his last time out. He exited after seven innings because a few long at-bats had him tossing a season-high 112 pitches.
Lohse evened his record, at 7-7, for the first time since late April with the win over San Diego and has remained a bright spot in an otherwise down season for Milwaukee, marred with injuries and one particularly devastating suspension.
While the Brewers haven't turned out to be the contenders he thought they would be when he signed with the team in the offseason, the right-hander believes they still have plenty to play for.
"Nothing against the guys that we're running out there, but it's not the lineup that you envisioned early in the season," Lohse said after his last outing. "You can take a positive out of it that these guys are getting some experience that can pay off down the road. We've still got two months in the season, and I think we can still go out there and play some good games. I've never been exactly in this position, but we play a lot of teams that are in the playoff hunt so maybe we can ruin their year, too."
Cubs: Arrieta to start part of Tuesday's doubleheader
Chicago's Jake Arrieta will start the nightcap of Tuesday's doubleheader against the Brewers. Arrieta was acquired early this month as part of the Feldman deal with Baltimore.
"You're curious to get your eyes on him yourself," Sveum said. "It's stuff, it's 95 to 97 [mph], and a guy who can throw a 91 mph slider or cutter, whatever you want to call it, as well as a changeup and curveball. You've got plus arm and plus stuff who can strike people out and do things that way."
Brewers: Segura gets a day off
Jean Segura was out of the lineup Sunday, but manager Ron Roenicke said the All-Star is fine after he took a ball off his arm Saturday.
"He's fine, but I thought about giving him a day [off] somewhere in here," Roenicke said. "Today I think worked out well. I really didn't even need to go in and inquire about how he was. I think it's a good for him to have a day, and we may do another one."
• The Brewers are still deliberating on whether they will promote a pitcher or a hitter for Tuesday's doubleheader, which allows both teams to activate a 26th man for the day.
• If Chicago closer Kevin Gregg becomes the latest Cubs player to be dealed before the Trade Deadline, Sveum said Sunday that he sees closer potential in reliever Pedro Strop, who pitched out of a bases-loaded jam Saturday.