This is it. The final series of the season for the Cubs and the Pirates, jockeying for home field advantage in next Wednesday’s Wild Card Game. The Pirates have a decisive advantage at this point, with a 2.0 game lead on the Cubs. But the Cubs do hold the tiebreaker by virtue of winning the season series – so if the Cubs can simply tie the Pirates, they’ll get the Wild Card Game at Wrigley Field.
How does that happen?
Well, it’s going to take at least two Pirates losses against the Reds – the team the Cubs just comfortably swept – at PNC Park. No matter what the Cubs do, if the Pirates win at least two of those games, the Wild Card Game will be in Pittsburgh. At a minimum, it’s good that the Cubs kept things close enough that the Pirates have to keep playing hard this weekend.
As for the Cubs, they need to sweep the Brewers in Milwaukee. Sure, they could technically catch the Pirates with a mere two-of-three series win against the Brewers, but that would require the Pirates to be swept by the Reds (who, again, have lost 12 in a row).
So, in conclusion: Go Cubs. Go Reds.