Despite doomsday feelings from plenty of fans, the World Series isn’t over quite yet.

The Chicago Cubs bounced back from consecutive home losses to win Game 5, extending the series for at least another game. The Cleveland Indians now have a chance to win it all at home, although their confidence might be wavering a bit.

Of course, the pressure is still on the Cubs to win two more games if they want to win a title for the first time since 1908.

The drama will only pick up in the coming days, so make sure you don’t miss the last two games of the year. 



The Cubs offense finally came alive Sunday, even if it was for just one inning. Kris Bryant got the scoring going with a solo home run in the third inning, which was followed by runs by Anthony Rizzo and Ben Zobrist.

With a solid start by Jon Lester and a heroic eight-out save by Aroldis Chapman, this was enough for Chicago to escape with a 3-2 win.

Indians manager Terry Francona summed up the closer’s performance in an interesting way, per Buster Olney of ESPN:

However, the offense will have to do more if it wants to win more games. The Cubs still haven’t found a way to solve Cleveland’s bullpen, and Andrew Miller didn’t even pitch in Game 5.

There is obvious talent on the roster, but except for Zobrist, players haven’t been able to string together hits. This needs to change with an upcoming battle against Josh Tomlin.

Although Tomlin lasted only 4.2 innings in Game 3, he didn’t allow a run and gave up only two hits with a walk while on the mound. Miller, Bryan Shaw and Cody Allen then helped close out the shutout.

Chicago hasn’t proved it can get much going against the bullpen, so it needs to be aggressive early to score against Tomlin pitching on short rest.

One thing the Cubs should feel good about is the starters over the next two games. Jake Arrieta is set to pitch on full rest, with Kyle Hendricks following him in Game 7 if necessary.

After Lester did his job in Game 5, these two pitchers are all anyone could hope for as second and third options. Ted Keith of Sports Illustrated provided this interesting statistic to keep Cubs fans excited:

Although neither pitcher has been able to go deep into games as often as the coaching staff would probably like, they have kept opponents off the board for much of the postseason. In the World Series, Arrieta and Hendricks have combined for 10 innings with just one run allowed.

Arrieta especially has the experience and confidence necessary to pitch a big road game and shut down a talented Cleveland lineup.

On the other hand, the Indians still have their ace in the hole in the form of Corey Kluber. He has pitched twice already in this series, allowing just one run in 12 innings. In five postseason starts, the 30-year-old pitcher has an ERA of just 0.89.

Most importantly, Francona has kept him from overexerting himself, as he threw only 88 pitches in Game 1 and 81 in Game 4. Even though he will be pitching on three days’ rest for the second time in a row, he should have plenty of energy to give everything he can in Game 7.

Adding this to a superior bullpen led by Miller and Allen, both of whom are likely willing to go as far as necessary to seal the win, the Indians will have the pitching advantage in the final game if it gets to that point.

Look for the Cubs offense to lead the way in a Game 6 victory before the Indians halt the momentum with a dramatic win in Game 7.

Predicted finish: Cleveland wins series 4-3.


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