World Series 2016 Schedule: Dates, TV Info and More for MLB ChampionshipOctober 24, 2016
The 2016 World Series is set, and no matter who wins, it will be a celebration a long time in the making.
The Chicago Cubs are considered the team of destiny as they try to win their first championship since 1908. On the other hand, the Cleveland Indians haven't won a title since 1948, and their fans will be just as excited about the possibility of a win.
Both teams will come out with a lot of energy to provide fans with the best possible matchup on the sport's biggest stage. Here is what you need to know about the upcoming battle.
|2016 World Series Schedule|
|1||Tuesday, Oct. 25||Cubs at Indians||8 p.m.||Fox|
|2||Wednesday, Oct. 26||Cubs at Indians||8 p.m.||Fox|
|3||Friday, Oct. 28||Indians at Cubs||8 p.m.||Fox|
|4||Saturday, Oct. 29||Indians at Cubs||8 p.m.||Fox|
|5*||Sunday, Oct. 30||Indians at Cubs||8 p.m.||Fox|
|6*||Tuesday, Nov. 1||Cubs at Indians||8 p.m.||Fox|
|7*||Wednesday, Nov. 2||Cubs at Indians||8 p.m.||Fox|
|Source: MLB.com (* if necessary)|
When it comes to the Cubs, it's hard not to talk about history. Not only has it been more than 100 years since the last World Series win, but the organization hadn't even won the pennant since 1945.
After the Cubs clinched the National League Championship Series, that was just about all anyone could talk about.
"To stand on that platform afterwards," Cubs manager Joe Maddon said, per Bob Nightengale of USA Today, "and you’re looking at the ballpark and the fans and the 'W' flags everywhere. I think about the fans, and their parents, and their grandparents, and great-grandparents, and everything else that’s been going on here for a while."
However, it's important to remember that the current squad stands on its own as an elite team. The players aren't necessarily carrying history with them; they won 103 games with a lot of talent in just about every part of the roster.
The starting pitching has been great all year, especially Jon Lester and Kyle Hendricks. The duo has allowed just five earned runs in 37.1 innings this postseason, including just three runs total in four starts in the NLCS.
Jake Arrieta hasn't been quite as dominant, but he is the reigning NL Cy Young winner and has good enough stuff to be a shutdown pitcher in the upcoming round.
Meanwhile, the lineup is even more dangerous, as so many different players can carry the offense on a given night. Kris Bryant, Anthony Rizzo, Addison Russell, Javier Baez and others can get hot at any time, and they have shown it throughout the season and playoffs. If this team is clicking, there aren't too many holes.
Of course, the Indians aren't in this spot by luck, either.
The bullpen is the real story of the team's success, featuring the lights-out combo of Andrew Miller and Cody Allen. While Allen is usually considered the "closer" on the team, the reality is that either pitcher can come in any inning and shut down any part of the lineup.
Manager Terry Francona has been creative in his use of the bullpen this postseason, and it has led to opponents having seemingly no chance of coming back late in games.
Although the starting rotation has been a mess because of a handful of injuries, the team still has Corey Kluber leading the way as one of the top pitchers in baseball. It's tough to know what to expect from either Josh Tomlin or rookie Ryan Merritt, but you can't count either out.
The real question mark is the lineup, which has loads of talent but struggled last series against the Toronto Blue Jays, as ESPN Stats & Info noted:
Cleveland is batting only .208 in the postseason, which is impressive for a team that has won two series already. With Francisco Lindor, Jose Ramirez and Jason Kipnis capable of racking up hits and Carlos Santana and Mike Napoli adding power, this unit can be quite dangerous if it gets going.
In any case, these two teams should create a memorable World Series that could go the distance.
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