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Chicago Cubs: Hendricks and Kershaw clash in pivotal Game 2

Oct 14, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Kyle Hendricks (28) walks to the dugout after batting practice during workouts the day prior to the start of the NLCS baseball series at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: Jon Durr-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 14, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Kyle Hendricks (28) walks to the dugout after batting practice during workouts the day prior to the start of the NLCS baseball series at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: Jon Durr-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Chicago Cubs look to take a 2-0 lead, while the Los Angeles Dodgers hope their ace can even the series after pitching in the last two games in the Division Series against the Nationals.

The Chicago Cubs and Los Angeles Dodgers face off in what could be a critical game for the away team. After a thrilling win in Game 1, the Cubs turn to NL ERA winner Kyle Hendricks (16-8, 2.19) in Game 2. The Dodgers will answer with Clayton Kershaw (12-4, 1.69) who looks to keep hope alive before the series heads to Los Angeles.

Jon Lester looked good in Game 1, but Cubs’ manager Joe Maddon didn’t think the same. He was lifted for a pinch-hitter in the sixth after just 77 pitches. The Dodgers tied the game in the eighth by scoring two runs on Aroldis Chapman who inherited the bases loaded with nobody out. But Miguel Montero‘s grand slam followed by a Dexter Fowler solo home run helped seal it for the Cubs.

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Hendricks hasn’t pitched since Game 2 of the NLDS when he left the game early after being hit in the right forearm by a line drive. In his only outing against the Dodgers this season, Hendricks was sharp. He picked up the win while allowing just two runs on three hits.

The Cubs managed to miss Kershaw this season. He’ll head to the mound just three days after closing out the NLDS, and five days after throwing 6 2/3 innings in Game 4. Kershaw has worked on short rest before, so this is nothing new. But he’s not had great success in the NLCS, as he’s 0-3 with a 7.23 ERA in six games pitched.

The Cubs will have just two lefties in the lineup in Anthony Rizzo and Jason Heyward. Maddon will go with his “defensive” lineup behind Hendricks who forces hitters to put the ball in play. Rizzo is just 1-for-20 in the postseason thus far. They’ll need him to pick it up if they hope to move on. Heyward hasn’t fared better as he’s just 2-for-15.

Here are the lineups for tonight’s Game 2:

First pitch is scheduled for 7 p.m. CT at Wrigley Field. The weather is overcast, but there are no storms in the forecast till early morning. The wind will likely be blowing out once again, gently to left field. FS1 will have the television coverage and 670 The Score will have the radio broadcast.

Be sure to check back here for our live chat during the game with staff members of Cubbies Crib.

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