As Game 6 approaches, Cubs focus on writing their own history

CLEVELAND — Game 6 of the World Series has produced some high drama over the years.

Carlton Fisk's home run in 1975 capped the granddaddy of all Game 6 World Series games, and Mookie Wilson's grounder through Bill Buckner in 1986 isn't far behind.

The Chicago Cubs and the Cleveland Indians will play Game 6 of the 2016 World Series Tuesday night at Progressive Field. The teams are coming off an electric Game 5 that could go a long way toward making this Series as one for the ages, depending on what happens in Cleveland.

The Cubs came from behind Sunday night and then held off the Indians 3-2 at Wrigley Field to pull within three games to two in the Series.

For the past several days, Cubs manager Joe Maddon has been touting this World Series as a great sales tool for baseball. This Series between two charter members of the American and National Leagues is showing signs of being one to remember.

“Yeah I'm sure people of Chicago, especially after last night's victory, that was pretty amazing,” Maddon said Monday evening as the Cubs prepared to fly to Cleveland. “Even getting to that juncture is going to stand out for many years. Now, it's up to us to take it to that seventh game, and you're really going to have that classic that everybody will remember.

“It's kind of lived up to the billing. You talk about the Fall Classic — two really good teams, teams that are really playing with a lot of passion nightly, a lot of young players. I love the fact that there's a lot of good young players on both teams.

“It's great for the industry. It's great for baseball. Hopefully, we're going to start to attract more youngsters. Regardless of whether they want to play or not, just lining them up to be baseball fans.”

The Cubs had found themselves down three games to one in the World Series, but they feel good about having pitchers Jake Arrieta and Kyle Hendricks lined up to start Games 6 and 7

They also have Kyle Schwarber back in the lineup as designated hitter for the games at Cleveland. Schwarber, who is coming off major knee surgery in April, has not been medically cleared to play the field, but his bat adds a whole new dimension to the Cubs lineup at DH.

“When I managed in the American League, I always thought it was somewhat of a disadvantage going to the National League, subtracting one offensive player,” said Maddon, who managed the AL's Tampa Bay Rays to the World Series in 2008. “It's probably more pronounced for teams that have profound, legitimate DH's. I'm a much bigger fan of National League game in general. But under these circumstance where we're at right now, I'll take that American League game, just to get Schwarbs involved.”

The Cubs are sending Jake Arrieta to the mound against the Indians' Josh Tomlin. As far as the Cubs see it they have nothing to lose.

“Why not us?” asked third baseman Kris Bryant after Sunday night's Game 5 victory. “I feel like we play our best with our backs up against the wall. Hopefully we can get out there and win Game 6 because you never know what can happen in a Game 7.

“We're about writing our own history. This team is a special one, and we look at so many times throughout the year where we haven't been playing good. But I feel like we can turn that around.”

• Follow Bruce's Cubs and baseball reports on Twitter @BruceMiles2112.

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