The World Series schedule is always announced in advance, and as soon as the All-Star Game is completed and the home-field advantage is assigned to the victorious league, it’s simply a matter of filling in the teams that are champions of their respective championship series.

Once the Chicago Cubs and Cleveland Indians had established themselves as league champions, we knew they would play Game 2 of the World Series at Progressive Field Wednesday night at 8:08 p.m. ET.

That was the case, but not anymore. Major League Baseball, in receipt of a weather report that indicated rain was likely later on Wednesday night, switched the start time to 7:08 p.m. with the hope the Cubs and Indians will complete the game before heavy rain forces a halt to the action.

Fox will televise Game 2.

After Cleveland jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the series behind the dominant pitching of Corey Kluber, the Indians will try to stretch their advantage to 2-0 behind Trevor Bauer. The Cubs, who want to even the World Series at 1-1 before returning home to Wrigley Field for Friday’s Game 3, will send 2015 Cy Young Award winner Jake Arrieta to the mound.

Bauer will have to overcome a cut on the pinkie finger of his pitching hand, as well as the Cubs’ sluggers. He lasted just 21 pitches when he started Game 3 of the American League Championship Series before he was removed because his injured finger was bleeding.

Bauer told reporters he was confident he would be able to pitch in the World Series without incident, but he also said he was confident that his finger would not bleed prior to his ill-fated ALCS start.

“I wouldn’t take the mound if I didn’t feel confident I’d be able to pitch and help the team,” Bauer explained to reporters. “So, yeah, I’m confident like I was back then too.”

Arrieta had an 18-8 record with a 3.10 ERA during the regular season, but he has not been on top of his game this postseason. He takes a 4.91 postseason ERA into his start Wednesday night.

Arrieta explained that pitching in the World Series was his motivation for playing baseball. 

“It’s why you play the whole season,” he told reporters. “To hopefully be in this position to be one of the last two teams standing with an opportunity to win a World Series for your organization, your city, for your team, friends and family. So it means a ton.”

While the Cubs lost Game 1, they got a lift from the return of Kyle Schwarber, who doubled off Kluber and drew a walk off reliever Andrew Miller. Schwarber had not played since suffering two torn knee ligaments in an early-April game at Chase Field in Arizona.

The Indians got a boost in the series opener from catcher Roberto Perez, who clubbed two home runs. He had hit three home runs during the regular season but morphed from light-hitting catcher to Game 1 hero with his performance Tuesday night. 

“Oh, I don’t think I’ve ever had a night like that,” Perez told reporters.

Despite the six-run loss, the Cubs remain confident. Shortstop Addison Russell told Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times that the team fought harder than the score indicated. 

“I think there’s a sour taste in our mouth tonight, because I think that we put up a better fight than that,” Russell said. “I went outside my approach and kind of pressed a little bit. But you turn the page. You stay hopeful and you get better tomorrow.”

If the Cubs don’t get better, they will be in an 0-2 hole when they return home to the Windy City, and that’s something they want to avoid.

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