The Cleveland Indians struck from all cylinders in Game Four as they beat the Chicago Cubs 7-2. Corey Kluber pitched a gem, while John Lackey had some trouble. The Indians now lead the series 3-1 and find themselves in a position where they can clinch a World Series victory tomorrow for the first time since 1948.
The Cleveland Indians Cruise to a Game Four Victory
Kluber Did What He Does Best
Kluber has done well so far throughout the postseason and that trend continued tonight. He looked a little shaky in the bottom of the first inning as Anthony Rizzo drove in Dexter Fowler for the first run of the game. The Indians got that run back right away in top of the second with a Carlos Santana home run. Kluber then gave the Indians the lead on a soft ground ball single that was then misplayed.
After the top of the second, Kluber went to work on the Cubs lineup for five shutout innings. Kluber put the Indians in a good position for the bullpen. Although Andrew Miller gave up a rare home run, the bullpen finished the Cubs off for the win.
The Indians Bats Woke Up
As mentioned before, they scored twice and took the lead in the top of the second. Francisco Lindor widened the lead an inning later with an RBI single. The Indians continued to chip away with another run scored off a sac fly from Lonnie Chisenhall in the sixth inning.
Jason Kipnis delivered the finishing blow in the top of the seventh as he hit a three-run home run to give the Indians a 7-1 lead.
Not only did the Indians score the most runs in a World Series game this year, but they got production out of different guys. Santana, Kluber, Lindor, Chisenhall, and Kipnis all helped the effort.
The Cubs Suffered From An Inconsistent Offense
The Cubs had a great offense in the regular season. They scored 808 runs for the third best mark in the majors. That offensive production continued in the postseason as well. They came into this game with 53 runs scored in 13 games compared to the Indians 35 runs scored in 11 games. However, the Cubs haven’t spread those runs out well.
They scored two or less runs in six of their 14 postseason games including this one. To no surprise they are 1-5 in those games. On the other hand they scored five or more runs in their other eight games and are 7-1 in those games. Essentially the Cubs need to score five runs to give themselves a good chance to win.
Instead of getting consistent production from players, they are getting scattered production. Rizzo is finally hitting after an abysmal NLDS and a bad start to the NLCS. Jason Heyward actually got two hits in this game.
That would have been big if others who were hot continued hitting. However, both Kris Bryant and Javier Baez have vastly slowed down in the World Series. If the Cubs want any chance of coming back in this series, they need more consistent hitting.
Game Five Preview
The Indians send Trevor Bauer to the hill against Jon Lester in Gave Five tomorrow. After going without any major sport championship title since 1948, Cleveland may have two this year if the Indians can manage one more win. After the Cleveland Cavaliers won the NBA Championship back in June, the drought-stricken city may be celebrating again. However, the Cavaliers know 3-1 leads don’t guarantee a series victory as they overcame the Golden State Warriors 3-1 lead. The Indians can’t celebrate until they get their fourth and final win which they will look for tomorrow.