The Cubs opened the defense of their 2016 World Series championship with a 3-0 victory over the Nationals in Game 1 of the National League Division Series on Friday night at Nationals Park.
Kyle Hendricks got the better of Stephen Strasburg in a terrific pitchers’ duel to help the Cubs draw first blood in the best-of-five series that will continue with Game 2 on Saturday in Washington D.C. .
At the plate
Anthony Rizzo went 2-for-4 with two runs batted in to lead the Cubs’ offense. Kris Bryant singled in a run and also scored one. .
Bryce Harper and Michael Taylor had the Nationals’ hits. .
On the mound
Both starting pitchers went seven strong innings. Hendricks did not allow a run on two hits with three walks and six strikeouts. The veteran right-hander threw 106 pitches, 69 for strikes.
Carl Edwards Jr. pitched a scoreless eighth and Wade Davis blanked the Nationals in the ninth to earn the save. .
Strasburg allowed two unearned runs with a walk and 10 strikeouts. The right-hander threw 81 pitches, 60 for strikes and suffered the loss. .
In the field
To lead off the top of the sixth, the Cubs’ Javier Baez hit a chopper down the third-base line that Anthony Rendon dropped for an error. Baez later came around to score the game’s first run on Bryant’s two-out single to right. .
Bryant made a terrific play to record the first out of the bottom of the seventh. The third baseman grabbed a dribbler hit by Jayson Werth with his bare hand and fired to first for the out. .
Game 2: 4:38 p.m., Saturday, TBS. LH Jon Lester (13-8, 4.33) vs. LH Gio Gonzalez (15-9, 2.96).
— Chris Kuc