Cleveland (1-1) at Chicago Cubs (1-1)
When: Friday, October 28th 2016
Where: Wrigley Field, Chicago, IL
Time: 8:05 ET | TV: FOX
Wrigley Field will host a World Series game for the first time since 1945 on Friday as the Chicago Cubs host the Cleveland Indians in Game 2 of the World Series. Dominant starts by Corey Kluber and Jake Arrieta have this series tied at one a piece going back to the Windy City. Kluber set a World Series record with eight strikeouts in the first three innings en route to a 6-0 Indians win in Tuesday’s opener while Arrieta took a no-hitter into the sixth Wednesday as the Cubs evened the series with a 5-1 triumph. The most impressive offensive player in the first two games aside from maybe Ben Zobrist (5-for-8), won’t even have a spot in the starting lineup for the next three games as Chicago will leave Kyle Schwarber on the bench with a pinch-hitting role in the National League park. Schwarber, who sat out all but two games of the regular season after tearing ligaments in his knee in April, was added to the World Series roster and went 3-for-7 with a pair of RBIs and a run scored while serving as designated hitter in Cleveland. He has not been cleared to play the outfield as of yet. Cleveland DH Carlos Santana, who is 0-for-6 with four strikeouts in the series, will be added to the outfield in Chicago.
Pitchers: Indians – Josh Tomlin (2-0, 2.53 ERA) | Cubs – Kyle Hendricks (1-1, 1.65)
Josh Tomlin did exactly what was asked of him in each of his first two postseason starts, allowing a total of three runs in 10.2 innings before turning things over to the Indians’ dominant bullpen. Tomlin allowed 36 home runs in 174 innings during the regular season but has yet to surrender one in the playoffs. Tomlin, who has never faced Chicago, was 2-1 with a 5.40 ERA in three interleague starts this season.
Kyle Hendricks outdueled Clayton Kershaw in the clinching game of the NLCS, allowing just two hits and no walks over 7.1 scoreless innings while striking out six. Hendricks, who led the majors in ERA (2.13), allowed one run over 12.2 innings in two NLCS starts and went 9-2 with a 1.32 ERA at home during the regular season. He will be facing Cleveland for the first time, but was 2-1 with a 1.89 ERA in three interleague starts this year.
The Cubs have done it all year without Schwarber, so it might be a bummer that he’s not in the lineup, but Chicago shouldn’t worry. He might have ignited the offense now heading back home. Hendricks could be one of the most underrated pitchers in baseball and his home record speaks for itself. I don’t think Cleveland wins another game that Kluber doesn’t start. I’ll take the Cubs tonight on the runline.
Pick: Cubs -1.5 +105