A thrilling NLDS Game 5 on Thursday night from Nationals Park saw the Los Angeles Dodgers, behind the heroics of Kenley Jansen and Clayton Kershaw, punch their ticket to the NLCS with a victory over the Washington Nationals. 

Looming in the Windy City are the Chicago Cubs, a rested team that made quick work of the San Francisco Giants in the NLDS and took four of seven games during the regular season from the Dodgers.

With the pennant on the line, here is the series schedule and how you can watch each game.


Odds Guide

Odds to Win World Series (via Odds Shark):

  • Chicago Cubs: 11-5
  • Los Angeles Dodgers: 9-2



Cubs defeat Dodgers in five games to win the pennant, Kris Bryant will be NLCS MVP

As the best team in baseball, the Cubs own the advantage when looking at the matchup on paper. In terms of every notable regular-season stat, Chicago has the better numbers:

The Cubs emitted a certain kind of swagger on their way to a Major League-best 103-58 record. It was the first time since 1935 that the club has won over 100 games in a single season while trying to end baseball’s longest and most famous championship drought. 

Unlike other ill-fated years, they’ve already showed off the clutch gene in the postseason, coming back from a three-run deficit in Game 4 of the NLDS in San Francisco:

Thanks to a young, fearless core, the Cubs have been able to look history in the eye while taking the league by storm.

Along with veteran second baseman Ben Zobrist, Chicago’s entire infield started the All-Star Game, becoming just the second unit to ever to do so alongside the 1963 St. Louis Cardinals, per ESPN.com

But their most important infielder will be third baseman Kris Bryant, who will be too much for the Dodgers to handle in the NLCS

An MVP candidate this season, Bryant has batted .320 with four home runs and six RBI in seven games against the Dodgers.

They’ll have a golden chance to jump out to an early lead, as Dodgers ace Kershaw isn’t expected to pitch until Game 3 following his Game 4 NLDS start and Game 5 save on one day of rest. 

Chicago’s pitching has been just as impressive as its bats thanks to a rotation headlined by a banged-up Kyle Hendricks and Jon Lester, who both posted sub-2.40 ERAs this season. Joining them is last year’s NL Cy Young Award winner Jake Arrieta to round out a dominant trio of pitchers that can stifle the Dodgers early in the NLCS

With such a well-rounded team, it’s difficult to think that the Cubs will be denied of their first National League pennant since 1945. 


Stats courtesy of Baseball-Reference.com

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