A look at the best-of-five NLDS between the Chicago Cubs and Washington Nationals.

Projected lineups

Cubs (92-70): CF Ian Happ, 3B Kris Bryant, 1B Anthony Rizzo, C Willson Contreras, LF Kyle Schwarber, SS Addison Russell, RF Jason Heyward, 2B Javier Baez.

Nationals (97-65): SS Trea Turner, RF Bryce Harper, 3B Anthony Rendon, 2B Daniel Murphy, 1B Ryan Zimmerman, LF Jayson Werth, C Matt Wieters, CF Michael A. Taylor.

Game 1 starting pitchers

Cubs: RH Kyle Hendricks (7-5, 3.03 ERA; 2.19 in 13 starts after All-Star break).

Nationals: RH Stephen Strasburg (15-4, 2.52, 204 Ks in 175⅓ IP).


The Nationals won the season series 4-3, outscoring the Cubs 39-28. The teams split four games in Chicago in June, and Washington won two of three at home in August. … The Cubs won 103 games last season on their way to winning their first World Series title since 1908. They fell off this year but surged in the second half — going 49-25 after the All-Star break — to reach the playoffs a third year in a row. No team has repeated as World Series champion since the Yankees won three in a row from 1998 to 2000. … The Nationals won the NL East for the fourth time in six years but are still searching for their first playoff series victory since moving from Montreal before 2005. … 2015 NL MVP Bryce Harper missed about a quarter of the season after hyperextending his left knee in August and only returned for five games in the final week, going 3-for-18 without an extra-base hit.


A look at the best-of-five NLDS between the Arizona Diamondbacks and Los Angeles Dodgers.

Projected lineups

Diamondbacks (93-69): LF David Peralta, SS Ketel Marte, 1B Paul Goldschmidt, RF J.D. Martinez, 3B Jake Lamb, CF A.J. Pollock, 2B Daniel Descalso, Brandon Drury, C Chris Iannetta or Jeff Mathis.

Dodgers (104-58): CF Chris Taylor, SS Corey Seager, 3B Justin Turner, 1B Cody Bellinger, LF Curtis Granderson, 2B Logan Forsythe or Chase Utley, C Yasmani Grandal, RF Yasiel Puig.

Game 1 starting pitchers

Diamondbacks: RH Taijuan Walker (9-9, 3.49).

Dodgers: LH Clayton Kershaw (18-4, 2.31, 202 K, 30 BB, 175 IP).


The Diamondbacks won the season series 11-8, winning the final six meetings as Los Angeles, which went 56-11 at one point over the summer, struggled the final five weeks of the season. … After presumptive Game 1 starter Robbie Ray threw 2⅓ innings in relief of Zack Greinke in Wednesday's 11-8 victory over Colorado in the wild-card game, Arizona will turn to Walker in the opener instead. Ray might go Game 2; he is 3-0 in five starts with a 2.27 ERA vs. the Dodgers in 2017. … Despite their September slide, the Dodgers, with a major league-high $226 million payroll, still finished with baseball's best record, winning the division by 11 games over Arizona. Now they seek their first pennant since winning it all in 1988. … Kershaw missed time because of a back injury for the second year in a row and wasn't quite the same afterward. He is 3-2 with a 3.48 ERA in six starts since his return.