Cubs Beat Dodgers and Are One Victory Away From World Series
Behind a fine pitching performance by Jon Lester and the revived bats of their hitters, the Chicago Cubs beat the Los Angeles Dodgers for the second night in a row on October 20th, this time by a score of 8-4. The Cubs took a 3-2 lead in the best of seven series, returning from a 2-1 deficit following two straight shutouts in games two and three. The series now shifts back to Chicago for Game Six on October 22nd, and if necessary, Game Seven on the 23rd.
So the Cubs will have two chances to finally reach their first World Series since 1945. Standing in the way, however, are Dodger pitchers Clayton Kershaw and Rich Hill. They were the guys who shut down the Cubs’ powerful bats in games two and three, and they will pitch games six and seven. Kershaw’s past post season performances have been good sometimes and pretty bad other times, but he’s pitched 7 2/3 innings of shutout ball over his last two appearances, with that victory over the Cubs and his first major league save in Game Five of the Dodgers’ NLDS victory over Washington. The Cubs will counter with Kyle Hendricks and Jake Arrietta.
Seems like Chicago is in the driver’s seat, needing just one more win at home to win the National League pennant, but they were up 3-2 at home against the Florida Marlins in 2003, with five outs to go, when the infamous Steve Bartman incident occurred. The Cubs came unraveled, lost Game Six, and meekly lost in Game Seven and it was the Marlins who advanced. In 1984, the Cubs had to win just one of three games in San Diego to take the then Best of Five NLCS from the Padres, but lost all three. This being the Cubs, naturally skeptical Cubs fans won’t be counting on that elusive championship until it actually happens.
The winner of the series will face the Indians in Cleveland in Game 1 of the World Series on October 25th.