After a wild five hour game Monday night, the Chicago Cubs will look to beat the San Francisco Giants in game four and move on to the NLCS.
Monday night proved to be a heart-breaker for the Cubbie faithful as the Giants walked off to win on a Joe Panik double off the wall. A new day and a new game often help to ease the pain of defeat, and that’s exactly what the Chicago Cubs have today–a chance to close the deal and advance to the NLCS.
Game four will once again take place at AT&T Park. The Chicago Cubs will send John Lackey to the mound to counter the Giants’ Matt Moore. Last night’s game didn’t finish until the 13th inning, and the apparently human Madison Bumgarner lasted only five innings. As a result, the Giants’ relievers were forced to throw a lot of pitches. This should prove to be an advantage for the Cubs, as some of them will likely be unavailable for tonight’s game.
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As for the Cubs, Mike Montgomery should be the only reliever unavailable for the Cubs. Chicago used six relievers, but Montgomery was the only one that had to throw an overwhelming amount of pitches. For the Cubs to win this game, they’ll need to chase Moore out of the game early.
This is why the Cubs signed John Lackey, right? A seasoned veteran, Lackey has plenty of postseason experience. At 37 years old, Lackey is nearing the end of his career. He didn’t sign with the Cubs to help build for the future. He came here to do one thing, and one thing only–win it all. There may be a number of players on both sides feeling pressure tonight, but John Lackey is not one of them. He’s ready for this.
For the Cubs, Jason Heyward will be back in right field and David Ross will be behind the dish. For the Giants, Angel Pagan is once again out of the lineup with back spasms. Gregor Blanco will replace him in left field. Other than that, you can expect more of the same tonight. Here are the lineups for both teams.
We may not agree with every move Joe Maddon makes, but it’s important to remember that his sometimes head-scratching decisions work out more often than not. Trust in him, and trust the process. He knows a thing or two about a thing or two. You can catch game four on FS1 at 7:30 PM CT. Eamus Catuli!