When the Chicago Cubs take on the Los Angeles Dodgers this afternoon from Chavez Ravine in Los Angeles, California the last thing the Cubs thought they would be trying to accomplish heading into the final game of their three-game set with the Dodgers is scoring their first run of the series.
Facing Clayton Kershaw this afternoon may not help this situation for Chicago.
According to CBS Sports, Kershaw has been his usual “lights out” self so far in 2017. Kershaw is off to a 7-2 start, with 2.01 ERA and an incredible 0.82 WHIP. Kershaw is 5-3 with a 2.18 ERA in eight career starts vs. the Chicago Cubs.
While Kershaw has been one of the best pitchers in baseball for the past five seasons, he isn’t worried about his career numbers anymore. All Kershaw wants is a World Series title.
“I’m not worried about the career stuff,” Kershaw said. “Eventually, you’ll get to look back on it all. But hopefully I’m right in the middle of all that stuff.” As for his 0.86 WHIP? “Well, one bad outing, and that will go right back up.”
The year 2016 was the year of the Cubs, no MLB fan can argue that. This season the Los Angeles Dodgers believe that they are a team that is meant to be on top of the rock.
Las Vegas oddsmakers believed that the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Washington Nationals where the best two teams in the National League to give the defending world champion Chicago Cubs a run for their money this season. While there’s still plenty of baseball left on the MLB schedule right now, it seems like the Dodgers are the best team in the NL.
The Cubs will look to Jon Lester this afternoon to help give them a win in this series.
Lester is off to a 3-2 start with a 3.19 ERA this season. He pitched the Chicago Cubs’ first complete game of the season against the San Francisco Giants last Tuesday and hopes he can keep the momentum rolling today against a tough Dodgers lineup. In his career vs. L.A., Lester has a 2-2 record and a 2.82 ERA in six career regular season outings.
“Not too shabby right?” Lester joked after the win against the Giants, his 12th at Wrigley in his last 16 home outings. “I think the complete game now is few and far between, so there’s always that gratification to go out there and finish it and walk off and shake everybody’s hand as they go off the field.”
“That’s classic stuff. He just kept getting better,” Cubs manager Joe Maddon said. “He’s a real thoroughbred starting pitcher and he’s starting to feel it.”
One thing manager Joe Maddon knows how to do is keep his team loose — even when the chips are down. Maddon knows that he has the talent to head back to the postseason this fall, and he doesn’t want the Cubs to start pressing too early.
While a loss today for the Chicago Cubs wouldn’t be the end of the world, they don’t want to leave L.A. without at least one good showing.
Vegas odds makers have the Los Angeles Dodgers listed as the favorite in today’s game at -160, with the over/under run total set at 6.5.
Today’s Cubs vs. Dodgers game can be seen live nationally on the MLB Network. The game will also be streaming live online through MLB.TV for all subscribers. If you are not a subscriber, Memorial Day weekend is a great time to sign up. MLB is offering 50 percent off their MLB season package.
First pitch for today’s Cubs vs. Dodgers game is scheduled for 4:05 p.m. ET.
[Featured Image by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images]