Major League Baseball
Preview
LA Dodgers at Chi. Cubs
When: 9:00 PM ET, Wednesday, October 18, 2017
Where: Wrigley Field, Chicago, Illinois

The Los Angeles Dodgers are one win away from ending the Chicago Cubs’ reign and getting to the World Series for the first time since 1988. The visiting Dodgers turn to Alex Wood on Wednesday as they look to continue the dominant pitching that has led them to a 3-0 lead in the National League Championship Series and complete a sweep over the Cubs.



The Cubs have scored first in every game of the series, but they haven’t crossed the plate again in any of them. Kyle Schwarber staked Chicago to a 1-0 lead in Game 3 with a first-inning home run, and it seemed the team's bats might be poised to break out of their slump, but Yu Darvish settled in after a rocky opening frame and the Dodgers’ bullpen continued its domination in the series. Los Angeles relievers have not allowed a run in their last 16 2/3 innings and have given up only two hits in the matchup. The Dodgers also remained hot at the plate, as Chris Taylor and Andre Ethier homered in their 6-1 win on Tuesday, giving the club eight blasts in the series and 11 in its six postseason games - all victories.

TV: 9 p.m. ET, TBS



PITCHING MATCHUP: Dodgers LH Alex Wood (2017: 16-3, 2.72 ERA) vs. Cubs RH Jake Arrieta (0-1, 0.00)

Wood will be making his first postseason start after four less-than-stellar relief outings. The 26-year-old allowed eight runs - four earned - in 5 1/3 innings over his first three postseason appearances before working two scoreless frames out of the bullpen against the Cubs in last year’s NLCS. Wood is 2-2 with a 2.93 ERA in eight career regular-season games (five starts) versus Chicago.

Arrieta is 4-3 with a 3.33 ERA in eight postseason starts over the last three seasons. The 31-year-old lost his only start in the NL Division Series against Washington despite allowing only one unearned run and two hits over four innings, and the Dodgers beat him in last year’s NLCS by tagging him for four runs over five frames. Arrieta is 1-3 with a 3.77 ERA in five career regular-season starts against Los Angeles.



WALK-OFFS

1. Of the 36 teams in postseason history that have led 3-0 in a best-of-seven series, 29 have completed a sweep.

2. The Cubs are 0-for-11 with runners in scoring position in the series.

3. Taylor is the first player in major-league history to homer as both an outfielder and shortstop in the same postseason.



PREDICTION: Dodgers 5, Cubs 3


Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away East Central West IL
LA Dodgers 110-58 W8 61-24 49-34 24-10 26-9 44-35 16-4
Chi. Cubs 95-75 L3 49-35 46-40 24-15 46-30 13-22 12-8
Last Meeting
LA Dodgers Chi. Cubs
Date Away Home Avg HR OPS Avg HR OPS
10/17/17 LAD 6 CHC 1 .257 2 .856 .235 1 .631
Player Stats
NL  Championship Series
Batting Player Avg Hits OPS
LA Dodgers A. Ethier .500 2 1.750
Chi. Cubs A. Avila 1.000 1 2.000
Offense Player HR Runs RBI
LA Dodgers C. Taylor 2 3 3
Chi. Cubs A. Almora Jr. 1 1 2
Pitching ERA Avg K
LA Dodgers 1.33 .242 32
Chi. Cubs 4.56 .160 20
Playoffs
Batting Player Avg Hits OPS
LA Dodgers A. Ethier .500 2 1.850
Chi. Cubs A. Avila 1.000 1 2.000
Offense Player HR Runs RBI
LA Dodgers C. Taylor 2 6 4
Chi. Cubs W. Contreras 1 4 1
Pitching ERA Avg K
LA Dodgers 2.33 .272 60
Chi. Cubs 4.00 .172 61