The Nationals have had two wonderful NLDS starts with lengthy no-hitter bids in them, and the Cubs have won both of those games. Chicago is up 2-1 in the series and can clinch its third trip in a row to the NLCS with a victory on Tuesday afternoon. The Nats still stand in the way, but the weather might, too.
Originally, Game 4 of the NLDS was going to be at 5:38 p.m. ET or on in primetime depending on whether the Dodgers-Diamondbacks NLDS continued past Game 3. With rain expected later in the evening, however, it was announced that the Cubs and Nats will play at that late-afternoon time instead in an attempt to avoid a lengthy delay or outright rainout.
There is a potential hiccup, though: Rain is now expected to start in Chicago around noon and basically projects to keep going until Wednesday morning and maybe into the afternoon.
The forecast could be incorrect, of course: Monday's projected a storm that would delay the Red Sox and Astros for hours, but the worst of it ended up missing Fenway and the game was played without any delay.
There's still a chance that the Cubs and Nats don't play at all on Tuesday, though, unless they try to sneak the game in before lunch. Maybe the rain won't be heavy enough to delay or postpone the game, like with the ALDS game in Boston on Monday. Maybe the storm will miss Wrigley completely or show up after a couple of hours of game and force a lengthy delay that ruins the night for everyone at the stadium and at home. There are all kinds of options here!
If they do end up playing, it's going to be Tanner Roark trying to keep Washington's season alive against Jake Arrieta. These days, Roark doesn't seem like the kind of pitcher who is a threat to throw a no-hitter, so maybe the Nats have a shot at extending this series.
- The Astros are the perfect fit for the city of Houston in these trying times. Let Grant Brisbee explain.
- Cody Bellinger made a grab that you'll see again and again if the Dodgers end up winning it all in 2017. And hey, even if they don't: This is the catch of the postseason so far.
- The Dodgers swept the D-Backs and in the process became the first team to clinch an NLCS spot. The Dodgers are there for the second year in a row, the third time since 2013, and the fifth time since 2009.
- All of those trips ended in defeat, by the way. Just in case you forgot.
- The Dodgers executed their team plan to perfection in sweeping the D-Backs, which was no given when you consider baseball gonna be baseball and also Los Angeles losing its season series to Arizona.
- The Astros became the first ALCS participant with a Game 4 victory over the Red Sox. Boston made it a series before it ended, winning Game 3 and pushing to within one run in Game 4, but Houston was the better team, and it showed.
- Boston got the game within one run thanks to Rafael Devers becoming the fourth player to ever hit an inside-the-park homer in the postseason.
- Here are three things we learned from the Astros-Red Sox ALDS.
- Aaron Judge finally broke his ALDS hitless streak with a two-run double. The big man has had a rough series, as he's batting .067/.263/.133 with 12 strikeouts in 19 plate appearances.
- Even without Judge contributing much, the Indians-Yankees ALDS is all tied at 2-2, and Game 5 will be played on Wednesday back in Cleveland.
- Go ahead, take your camera out at the ballpark. Lindsey Adler explains why that shouldn't be a problem.
- John Farrell was ejected from Monday's ALDS game, which means we now have an excuse to share Meg Rowley on a little-known rule about managers and ejections and street clothes.
- In non-postseason news, the Braves have identified their candidates for the general manager position.