Chicago (3-3) at Cleveland (3-3)
When: Wednesday, November 2nd 2016
Where: Progressive Field, Cleveland, OH
Time: 8:05 ET | TV: FOX
The Chicago Cubs are doing their best to make this one of the most dramatic World Series comebacks ever as they have forced a deciding Game 7 with the Cleveland Indians on Wednesday night. Addison Russell provided the offense last night with a grand slam and two-run double to propel the Cubs to a 9-3 victory in Game 6 to knot the series up after trailing three games to one. The Cubs will attempt to become the sixth team in history to come back from a 3-1 deficit to win a World Series. Kris Bryant had four hits, including a home run, for the Cubs, who capitalized on a huge defensive misplay by the Cleveland outfield that led to a three-run first inning. A catchable fly ball hit by Russell that would have been the third out of the inning dropped in safely between center fielder Tyler Naquin and right fielder Lonnie Chisenhall, allowing two runs to score and giving the Cubs a 3-0 lead. Cubs starter Jake Arrieta (2-0) pitched 5.2 innings, allowing two runs on three hits and three walks with nine strikeouts. Indians SS Francisco Lindor, who went 0-for-3, has 18 hits in the postseason, two shy of Sandy Alomar’s Cleveland record for most hits in a postseason. In an odd move, Cubs manager Joe Maddon brought closer Aroldis Chapman into a 7-2 game in the 7th and he threw 20 pitches two nights after throwing 40, but said that he would be ready to pitch in Game 7, if needed.
Pitchers: Cubs – Kyle Hendricks (1-1, 1.31 ERA) | Indians – Corey Kluber (4-1, 0.89)
Kyle Hendricks, who won 16 regular-season games, took a no-decision in Game 3 of the World Series when he allowed six hits and two walks in 4.1 scoreless innings. The National League ERA leader is excited for the opportunity to help the Cubs end their 108-year title drought. “Exactly, this is the ultimate dream. You dream of getting to the World Series, winning the World Series,” Hendricks told reporters. “When you’re out in your backyard as a kid, playing Little League at the field with your friends, this is the moment you dream about. … It’s always Game 7 of the World Series.”
Cleveland’s ace Corey Kluber will pitch his third game of the World Series and has struck out 15 in 12 innings while allowing just one run in his two victories. He has repeatedly had his best stuff during the postseason despite regularly pitching on short rest and manager Terry Francona has been impressed that the 2014 American League Cy Young Award winner has remained sharp. “I wouldn’t want to do this all year, in fairness to him,” Francona told reporters. “But I think for a couple starts, I think he can handle it just fine.”
Each team has their best pitcher going for them to start the game, but knows that any sign of trouble will alert the bullpen quickly. The Cubs used Chapman last night and he will still be on call, but they also have Jon Lester and John Lackey available. The Indians have a rested bullpen with Andrew Miller and Cody Allen not pitching last night. The Cubs have all the momentum and have the Indians feeling the pressure. This game could go either way. Kluber has been outstanding and Hendricks has been the Cubs best pitcher. It’s going to be a good game, but I think the Cubs will finish it off.
Pick: Cubs -110