Pittsburgh Pirates v. Chicago Cubs – The Intangibles
Oct 4, 2015; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates right fielder Gregory Polanco (25) reacts at second base after hitting a double against the Cincinnati Reds during the seventh inning at PNC Park. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Since this will most likely be a low-scoring game, the outcome could be influenced by factors outside of the starting lineups and the starting pitchers. Both teams have deep benches; the Pirates have a variety of options in the speed, power, and defense departments, while the Cubs have a mix of youth and experience. Both managers are considered two of the best in the game, with Hurdle being more of a player’s coach and Maddon being known more for his game-day strategy. And let’s not forget the arms of the Pirate outfielders, the impact of home field advantage, and the youth of the Cubs and how those players will react to the playoff atmosphere. In a one-game playoff, every move and every moment is amplified, and I could see one seemingly small play here or there determining the outcome of this game.