The Chicago Cubs were outmatched by Cleveland Indians starter Corey Kluber as they dropped the opener of this historic World Series. Jon Lester was strong, but the Cubs’ bats couldn’t string anything together.
The Chicago Cubs might have gotten a look at what they’ll see the rest of this World Series. The Indians Corey Kluber was fantastic as he went six innings, striking out nine Cubs along the way. Jon Lester gave up what seemed to be an innocent run on a slow infield chopper to Jose Ramirez. But that was all Kluber and the Indians would need.
Lester followed the infield single from Ramirez by hitting Brandon Guyer. With two strikes, it brought in the second run. He gave up just one more run–a solo home run to Roberto Perez–as he went 5 2/3 innings, allowing three runs and striking out seven.
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It was Kluber’s work of the corners that made him near untouchable. He struck out seven in the first three innings–an MLB record. Cubs hitters were frustrated all night. And that poured over to Lester on the mounds as he didn’t seem to get the same calls as Kluber.
He was vocal on more than one account, and eventually would have a quick conversation after an inning with Larry Vanover. He would settle in on the night, but the damage was already done at that point.
Zobrist provides most of the offense
The offense was paced by Ben Zobrist who had three of the team’s six hits. But the Cubs left nine men on base while going 1-for-9 with runners in scoring position. For Cubs fans, it was eerily similar to the loss to the Dodgers and Kershaw when they had no answers. But if the Indians plan to go to Kluber again in Game 4–and possibly Game 7 if necessary–they’ll have had a good look at him.
Kyle Schwarber made his return to the Cubs after being injured after just a few games this season. Most expected very little of Schwarber. But he hit a double off of Kluber and took a walk from Andrew Miller. Not an easy task for a guy who hadn’t seen much live pitching since April.
But while the Cubs pushed Miller, he only bent but did not break as they couldn’t break through against him. They even loaded the bases with nobody out in the seventh but came up empty. David Ross couldn’t check his swing and came up empty against Miller.
The Indians put an exclamation point on the night in the bottom of the eight as Perez hit his second home run of the night. It was a three-run shot to make it 6-0, Indians.