LOS ANGELES - Joe Maddon preaches keeping things simple, especially this time of year.
The Cubs finally broke out on offense in Game 4, so why change anything up for Game 5?
Of course, the starting battery will change, with Jon Lester taking the mound and his personal catcher David Ross behind the plate for what could be the final time together with Ross still slated to retire after the season.
After a one-game stint in the cleanup spot, Anthony Rizzo moved back to the three-hole and wound up with three hits - including his first postseason homer.
Addison Russell also had a breakout performance (three hits and a homer) in the eight spot, but moves up one spot in the order with "Grandpa Rossy" taking over the eight hole.
Willson Contreras is 6-for-15 (.400 AVG) this postseason, but sits in favor of Ross at catcher and Jason Heyward in the outfield with right-hander Kenta Maeda on the mound for the Dodgers.
Here's the way the Cubs will line up behind Lester:
1. Dexter Fowler - CF
2. Kris Bryant - 3B
3. Anthony Rizzo - 1B
4. Ben Zobrist - LF
5. Javy Baez - 2B
6. Jason Heyward - RF
7. Addison Russell - SS
8. David Ross - C
9. Jon Lester - P
The Dodgers are still insisting they're sending Maeda to the mound and not starting Clayton Kershaw on short rest.
Game 6 will be Saturday evening at Wrigley Field and a marquee pitching matchup of Kershaw vs. Kyle Hendricks.
GREEN BAY, Wisc. – In one of the few recent positive personnel developments for a beleaguered Bears team, linebacker Pernell McPhee was moved from his physically unable to perform status onto the active roster on Thursday.
The team waived fullback Paul Lasike to open a spot on the 53-man roster for McPhee, who has been working his way back from offseason knee surgery and only began practicing last Friday.
McPhee being active for the Green Bay game was still unknown mid-afternoon, and the outside linebacker has had just two practice sessions plus the team’s walk-through on Wednesday.
But McPhee was voted as one of the defensive co-captains and universally considered one of the emotional leaders on a team that has taken emotional hits for much of this season. Additionally, McPhee projects to provide a major lift for a spotty pass rush, although how soon he will be able to contribute in more than selected situation remains to play out.
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McPhee is not expected to play the majority of opponent’s snaps in whichever game he makes his return.
McPhee has appeared in 74 games over five seasons with the Ravens (2011-14) and Bears (2015), starting 18 contests, posting 155 tackles, 23 sacks, one interception, 10 pass breakups, four forced fumbles and one fumble recovery. He also owns one blocked field goal on special teams.
McPhee set career highs in tackles (64) and interceptions (one) in his first season as a Bear in 2015. He also ranked third on the Bears in sacks (six) and tied for second in tackles for a loss (10) in 2015. He helped the Ravens to a Super Bowl Championship after the 2012 season, posting four tackles, one sack, two pass breakups, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery during the playoff run.