Total Access Baseball

User login

Who's online

There are currently 0 users and 1 guest online.

Indians vs. Cubs Live-Stream Schedule, Odds and Pre-Game 4 Comments

The Cleveland Indians took a critical 2-1 series lead Friday night in the 2016 World Series over the Chicago Cubs, and the road team now has a chance to take a commanding advantage Saturday night in Game 4 at Wrigley Field.

In a tight pitching affair, Josh Tomlin allowed only two hits through 4.2 innings, and the dynamite bullpen combination of Andrew Miller, Bryan Shaw and Cody Allen held down the fort for a 1-0 Cleveland win. Meanwhile, Chicago's streaky offense made its presence felt again, as the team was shut out for the fourth time this postseason.

Here is a look at the full viewing schedule, including live stream, in addition to odds and some notable comments from both teams ahead of Saturday's showdown.

Odds are according to Odds Shark.

Corey Kluber will take the mound Saturday looking to lift Cleveland with a repeat of his dominant Game 1 performance. In a 6-0 win, the Indians ace was nearly flawless in six innings while allowing no runs and four hits.

The movement of his sinker—which is especially difficult for right-handed hitters, as it ties them up at their hands to force easy grounders—was working at full force to frustrate the Chicago lineup. Anthony Rizzo elaborated on the pitch's effectiveness after Game 1, per's Anthony Castrovince.

"It just starts at your hip," Rizzo said of the pitch. "And it comes in at you and then he can cut it off of that, too. ... It's just really picking a lane."

There could be more of that sort of frustration coming for Chicago, as Kluber has been locked in during this postseason. In four starts, the 2014 American League Cy Young Award winner is 3-1 with a microscopic 0.74 ERA. Kluber had never pitched in the playoffs before his current campaign, and he attributes his success so far to elevated focus, per Castrovince.

"Not that there is less importance on a regular-season game," said Kluber, "but it's almost like you have that extra level of intensity or focus and stuff that it's not really something you can replicate."

Chicago proved this postseason it can rebound against top pitchers the second time around.

In the National League Championship Series, Los Angeles Dodgers star Clayton Kershaw owned the Cubs in Game 2 with seven innings of work while allowing no runs, two hits and one walk. In Game 6, Chicago was much better; Kershaw allowed four runs and seven hits in five innings, as the Cubs were able to advance to the World Series.

Can Chicago replicate this success against Kluber? Well, it may need to find a way to get Kyle Schwarber involved. At this point, though, it seems Schwarber will not be available for multiple at-bats in any game at Wrigley Field:

He can make an impact as a pinch hitter and as a presence in the dugout, as Cubs President of Baseball Operations Theo Epstein said the team views his bat and character as his greatest assets, per Sports Illustrated's Tom Verducci:

His bat and his intangibles are why we drafted him. He’s a complete impact hitter with the bat, but more than that he's the perfect player to have as a franchise player because he can be one of your best players who everybody else wants to follow because of his character. He's a special player and a special person.

Schwarber popped out in his lone pinch-hit effort in Game 3. Chicago's lineup lacked some of the swagger Friday that it had when Schwarber was in the lineup for Games 1 and 2, as it only totaled five hits, so it will need to find another source of offense if Schwarber continues to start on the bench.

The uncertainty around Chicago's offense puts some extra pressure to perform on John Lackey, who will start Game 4 for the Cubs. The 38-year-old has plenty of playoff experience, but his starts this postseason have been very spread out, as he noted Friday, per the Chicago Tribune's Paul Skrbina.

"It has been kind of a crazy schedule for me," Lackey said. "I feel like I'm pitching every two weeks kind of deal. Once you get into the game you kind of fall back on things you've been doing all season, and hopefully you execute."

Lackey has not pitched since Oct. 19, when he tossed four innings with two runs and three hits allowed in a no-decision that resulted in a 10-2 win. His only other start came Oct. 11, when Lackey also went four innings in a no-decision.

However, Cubs manager Joe Maddon is still confident he can get a quality outing out of Lackey in a critical ballgame, per Skrbina:

I just want to believe that he keeps getting stronger. But there is a certain amount of rust element involved. However, I have a lot of faith in John, and I know he's going to be ready. I never worry about him, man. He has been there, done that, and I know he'll be ready for (Saturday).

Lackey's history against the current Cleveland roster suggests he should do fine Saturday, as most of the Indians have struggled against the righty:

Given Lackey's track record this postseason, the Cubs should not expect more than five innings from their starter. This could be troubling considering the fact Chicago has not generated any consistent offense and that it will be going against an ace in Kluber.

The Indians already proved they can win at Wrigley Field, and they should be favored in this one. However, the Cubs cannot be counted out just yet, as the team responded to a two-game scoreless streak against the Dodgers with 23 combined runs in the next three contests. Chicago has the ability to explode offensively; it just remains to be seen if it can do so against Kluber.


Statistics are courtesy of

Read more MLB news on


Best of the American League
Tampa Bay
Los Angeles
Total votes: 270

Recent blog posts

Featured Sponsors