According to manager Joe Maddon, Arrieta will get Sunday's start off to rest his hamstring, which he injured in a Labor Day game against the Pittsburgh Pirates. And second of all, it's very flattering if that is true.
He's still not 100 percent, though he's close.
Right-hander Jake Arrieta will not pitch for the Cubs in Sunday's regular-season finale against the Cincinnati Reds at Wrigley Field. They have options to get by without Arrieta, but boy, it would sure be nice to have him out there for the NLCS and on, should the Cubs get that far again. This is more precautionary to allow a little more healing to take place.
Cubs starter Jake Arrieta pitches in the first inning of a baseball game against the Pittsburgh Pirates on September 4, 2017, in Pittsburgh. The ideal choice here would be to have Lackey make the start.
Lester also is coming back from time on the disabled list in August with lat tightness and shoulder fatigue. Hendricks has been the most consistent pitcher in the second half for the Cubs.
Maddon stressed the decisions won't be based exclusively on recent performance.
"Are you serious? That's awesome". "[The Nationals are] really a hard group to plot against because they're very balanced".
Given a ideal set of circumstances, the choice would nearly certainly be Lester, the veteran lefty who was the Cubs' Game 1 starter in all five playoff series in 2015 and 2016.
The Cardinals were eliminated from postseason contention when Leonys Martin leaped at the center-field fence to rob Paul DeJong of a tying home run with two outs in the 11th inning, preserving the Chicago Cubs' 2-1 win over St. Louis on Thursday night.
"I feel great", Arrieta said. "I'm plenty healthy enough to go out there and compete and pitch at a high level".
Quintana has no playoff experience, but he has big-game experience, having pitched for his native Colombia against the U.S.in the World Baseball Classic in March.