The last time these two teams met, at Wrigley Field in April, there was much pomp and ceremony as the Cubs celebrated their 2016 World Series championship on two of the three dates. Even with all those potential distractions, Cubs pitching held the Dodgers to four runs in the three games and won two of three.
Both teams are hot right now. The Cubs went 7-2 on the homestand that ended Thursday. The Dodgers have won six of their last eight and have outscored their opponents 42-28 over that span. And L.A. has the major leagues’ best home record at 17-8.
And the Cubs didn’t have to face Clayton Kershaw in that Wrigley series. Of course, the last time the Cubs saw Kershaw they hit him pretty well. Should be a fun and interesting series, and then these teams won’t face each other again in 2017 — unless they meet again in October.
The Dodgers have built their 28-20 record primarily against teams outside the N.L. West. They are just 16-16 within their division, 12-8 outside it. The Cubs are the only team outside the N.L. West to have a winning record (2-1) against L.A. so far this year.
Friday: Jake Arrieta, RHP (5-3, 4.80 ERA, 1.401 WHIP, 3.92 FIP) vs. Alex Wood, LHP (5-0, 1.88 ERA, 1.023 WHIP, 1.89 FIP)
Saturday: John Lackey, RHP (4-4, 4.82 ERA, 1.395 WHIP, 4.94 FIP) vs. Brandon McCarthy, RHP (4-1, 3.76 ERA, 1.180 WHIP, 3.08 FIP)
Sunday: Jon Lester, LHP (3-2, 3.19 ERA, 1.258 WHIP, 3.08 FIP) vs. Clayton Kershaw, RHP (7-2, 2.01 ERA, 0.823 WHIP, 2.63 FIP)
Times & TV channels
Friday: 9:10 p.m CT, ABC7 Chicago, MLB Network (outside Chicago and Los Angeles markets)
Saturday: 6:15 p.m. CT, Fox-TV (regional — coverage map)
Sunday: 3:10 p.m. CT, CSN Chicago, MLB Network (outside Chicago and Los Angeles markets)
Looking solely at the pitching matchups, this series wouldn’t look too good for the Cubs. But all three Cubs starters had good outings in their last starts, and the Dodgers are treading water recently (winning six of their last 11) while the Cubs just completed an excellent homestand (winning seven of nine).
I’ll go out on a limb and say that the Cubs win the games Arrieta and Lester throw and win the series two games to one.
How many games will the Cubs win against the Dodgers?
This poll is closed