Chicago Cubs pitcher Jake Arrieta flirts with perfection

The Cubs will play the Pirates in next week’s NL wild-card game. “I’m talking about the players and the ballpark and the city and all the lore that’s attached to that”.


The playoff game will played on the stadium’s brand new HD video board under the lights, according to the Iowa Cubs.

If the Chicago Cubs can beat the St. Louis Cardinals, the winningest team in the National League this season, the Cubs should be able to reach the World Series and beat just about every team but the Toronto Blue Jays.

I’m not going to Milwaukee for any of these, as I am getting ready to head to Pittsburgh for the wild-card game. “It’s not over yet”.

Arrieta improved to 6-1 with a 1.68 ERA in nine career starts against the Pirates.

The Cardinals’ pitching is something at which to marvel with its team ERA of 2.89, but the Cubs rank third in baseball for that stat (3.44), a mark that is better still than the highly-touted Los Angeles Dodgers (3.48). His 8.8 WAR is best among all pitchers and fourth in the league behind Bryce Harper, Mike Trout and Josh Donaldson.

Arrieta tossed a three-hitter with 11 strikeouts in his latest matchup with Milwaukee, a 4-0 victory September 22. He gained his 21st win of the season Sunday night. Another major factor that voters need to think about is that Arrieta pitches in the best division in baseball.

All three of the Cubs’ starters have something to shoot for in this final weekend.

Pittsburgh (95-61) and Chicago (90-65) each have clinched a playoff spot and lead the NL wild-card standings, so the Pirates could see Arrieta again in the first game of the postseason on October 7.

Kirby Yates (1-0) got two outs for the win. In fact, since August. 1, the Cubs have allowed four or fewer runs in 37 of 55 games, and allowed more than seven runs just four times.

Whoever Maddon goes with for the one game, he should have confidence in that pitcher giving the club a good chance to win.

The Cubs not only have three guys (Kris Bryant, Anthony Rizzo and Dexter Fowler) who rank in the top 20 in Offensive WAR in the NL, but they also have a deep, talented, and versatile bench.

“He can hit”, Burnett said. I can remember taking my little transistor radio outside by the drainpipe because that was the only way to get reception sometimes.

Not only did Arrieta pick up his 21st win during his final regular season home appearance, but he launched his second home run of the season to help out his own cause.


First pitch is slated for 7:10 p.m. central time and will air live on CSN, WBBM 780 A.M. and for fans who are out of the market. He’s hit as many homers (two) as he’s given up (two) during that stretch. The same goes for LOB percentage – no one in the past five years has had one as low as the one Arrieta has posted in the second half.

Mandatory Credit Matt Marton-USA TODAY Sports