It's Official! The 2016 World Series: Cubs vs. Indians
By Stevil, October 23rd, 2016
Last night we watched the Cubs man-handle the Dodgers as they completed their task of dominating the National League in an effort to reach the World Series for the first time since 1945. Their last title was in 1908. Their city-wide suicide rates have skyrocketed since then, seemingly increasing with each failed season--and I don't think that's a coincidence. We'll ignore population growth and all social-economical figures that could make for a strong rebuttal in an effort to keep this controversial assumption one-sided: strictly baseball.
Earlier in the week, we watched the Indians man-handle the Blue Jays in an effort to crush Canadian-imperialism from infiltrating America's past time, and reach the World Series for the first time since 1997. Their last title was in 1948. The photo above is a capture of the cast from the much-adored film Major Leauge in 1989, not the actual '48 Indians. Take note of Cerrano, fourth from the right; center row.
While virtually no public figures or news source gave Cleveland a chance in hell this offseason, savvy-minded baseball fans everywhere are likely rejoicing, and a few of them are likely cashing-in on low-risk bets that paid off. The Indians have a barrage of talent and depth. The fact that they've gotten this far should be no surprise for those with any kind of understanding of the value of depth. Ironically, the Cubs have been recognized for just that: depth, yet their AL counterparts essentially flew under the radar, all the way up to the top.
So, we'll see two teams with a lot of history and little previous success square off, as the 2016 season has finally whittled down the best of the best to the final two, Cleveland vs. Chicago. For me, it's a pleasure to see teams not from New York or California involved.
With that said, lets address the lineups:
Chicago Cubs: nothing changes.
Cleveland Indians: nothing changes, except for one of Napoli/Santana likely coming out for games played in Chicago.
And the rotations:
Chicago Cubs: Lester Game 1; Arrieta, Game 2; Lackey, Game 3; Hendricks, Game 4
Cleveland Indians: normal, top of the order on down.
I'm speculating that Hendricks will be given full rest, though he could be switched with Lackey. There's no shortage of options for Chicago.
That about sums up the grueling task of previewing the upcoming World Series. Any questions may be directed to myself, though they'll be answered at my discretion, and any question that remains unanswered will be a result of the commenter having been ignorant to the success of the Indians this season and therefore deserving of being snubbed--just as they would have been by any respectable sports writer.
The 'Series gets underway Tuesday, October 25th.
UPDATE: Kyle Schwarber has been added to the Cubs' roster at the expense of Rob Zastryzny. So they'll likely have him DH for the games in Cleveland and pinch hit.