Los Angeles Dodgers (Kershaw 12-4, 1.69) vs. Chicago Cubs (Hendricks 16-8, 2.13)
Chicago leads series 1-0
8pm ET on FS1
The Cubs won a wild last night by a score of 8-4, getting 6 strong innings from Jon Lester, a steal of home by Javier Baez on a blown suicide squeeze by Lester, and a pinch-hit grand slam from Miguel Montero, just the third in postseason history. And so, badly in need of win, the Dodgers will hand the ball to the greatest pitcher in the franchise’s history.
For all of his regular season exploits, Clayton Kershaw has had is troubles in the postseason, going 3-6 with a 4.79 ERA in 77 innings of playoff baseball, but maybe, just maybe, he put some ghosts to rest in his last outing. Kershaw came on in relief in the deciding Game 5 against the Nationals, with one out in the 9th and men on first and second, to face NL OPS leader Daniel Murphy, getting him out on a pop fly before striking out Wilmer Difo for a 4-3 Dodgers win. Kershaw has not yet faced this vintage of Chicago Cubs, but he’s held the guys currently on the roster to a .602 OPS over 155 plate appearances, with just 2 home runs and 59 strikeouts.
The Dodgers will have to contend with Kyle Hendricks, who won the National League ERA title, though his postseason resume is as spotty as Kershaw’s, if not as long. In 3 playoffs starts, Hendricks has lasted just 12 ⅓ innings, surrendering 7 runs on 13 hits, including 4 homers. Against the Giants in Game 2 of the NLDS, Hendricks gave up 2 runs on 4 hits before getting the hook with 2 out in the 4th, though he did drive in a pair of runs with a bases-loaded single. In his lone start against the Dodgers he gave up just 2 runs on 3 hits and a walk, and for his career he’s held the current Dodgers roster to a .664 OPS in 39 PA.
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