PITTSBURGH -- Ahead of his wild-card start on Wednesday night against the Pittsburgh Pirates, Chicago Cubs pitcher Jake Arrieta garnered his second consecutive pitcher of the month award on Monday. He followed a dominating August with a scary September, going 4-0 with a 0.45 ERA while opponents hit just .148 against him.
Will Arrieta's incredible finish to the season be enough to win him the Cy Young Award? Arrieta was asked about his credentials as compared to those of his competition -- mainly Los Angeles Dodgers righty Zack Greinke -- on the Carmen and Jurko Show on ESPN 1000 in Chicago.
“Greinke had one complete game all year?” Arrieta asked rhetorically. “I think Cy Young has to complete a few more games than that. Clayton Kershaw has four so we’re tied there. I think the no-hitter might one-up him there. Maybe the complete games might be one of the things that leans in my favor.”
Wild-card umpires: Major League Baseball announced the umpires for Wednesday’s wild-card game and Jeff Nelson will be behind the plate. Arrieta has one start in his career with Nelson calling balls and strikes; he walked three and struck out three in 6 2/3 innings. Pirates starter Gerrit Cole is 3-0 with a 2.00 ERA in three starts with Nelson; he has struck out 18 and walked just three. Hunter Wendelstedt is manning first base while crew chief John Hirschbeck is at second with Jim Reynolds at third. Mike Eastbrook is down the left-field line and Cory Blaser is in right field.
Cubs-Pirates workout day: Both the Cubs and Pirates will work out at PNC Park on Tuesday afternoon, with the Cubs taking the field at 2 p.m. ET while the Pirates will practice at 4 p.m. Each manager and starting pitcher will hold a news conference before their team's respective workout.
Teams don’t have to submit their 25-man roster to the league until Wednesday morning.
TBS broadcasters: Wednesday’s game is on TBS at 8:08 p.m. ET with Ernie Johnson, Ron Darling and Cal Ripken Jr. on the call.
Games 1 and 2 of the division series, which also is on TBS, will take place in St. Louis on Friday at 6:45 p.m. ET and Saturday at 5:37 ET p.m. The rest of the division series schedule has yet to be set.
Bryant most popular: Cubs rookie Kris Bryant had the best-selling jersey in baseball in 2015. He’s the first rookie and youngest player to lead the list since they started tracking sales of player jerseys in 2010. Bryant beat out Madison Bumgarner, Buster Posey, Clayton Kershaw and Mike Trout.
Senators bet: Sen. Mark Kirk of Illinois and Sen. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania have made a wager on Wednesday’s game. Kirk is offering up Lou Malnati’s deep-dish pizza and 312 Beer while Toomey is betting Iron City Beer and Pierogies Plus.