Jake Arrieta’s road to win No. 22 runs through Milwaukee
By David Miniel
We’re closing in on the final games of the 2015 regular season and the Chicago Cubs are doing the very best they can in order to earn home-field advantage in next week’s N.L. Wild Card playoff against the Pittsburgh Pirates.
While the Pirates get set to deal with the down-and-out Cincinnati Reds, the Milwaukee Brewers will make an attempt at playing spoiler for this young and dangerous North Siders club that racked up 94 wins (so far) in Joe Maddon‘s first year on board.
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Taking the mound for the Cubs (94-65) will be none other than Jake Arrieta. Arrieta (21-6, 1.82 ERA), believe it or not, has won 10 of his previous 11 starts and continued to lower his earned run average in the process while recording 11 strikeouts.
On Sept. 22, Chicago’s ace dominated the Brewers (68-91) by working a complete game shutout which helped earn him N.L. Player of the Week honors according to NBC Chicago.
Not only did Arrieta pick up his 21st win during his final regular season home appearance, but he launched his second home run of the season to help out his own cause.
He nearly went deep a second time, but the ball died down on the warning track and was fielded right in front of the ivy. Imagine if he had put a little more into it, that crowd would have leaped over the basket and into the field of play.
Stepping up to the plate opposite Arrieta will be another young right-hander that made his debut this season for Milwaukee, Ariel Pena.
Pena (2-0, 3.91 ERA) is currently 2-0 in his previous five appearances, allowing a combined 10 earned runs on 19 hits while issuing 12 walks and punching out 21 batter’s. Which isn’t all that bad.
He picked up a no-decision against the Cardinals just seven days ago.
First pitch is slated for 7:10 p.m. central time and will air live on CSN, WBBM 780 A.M. and MLB.tv for fans who are out of the market.
Here’s a look at tonight’s starting lineup’s for both teams: