CHICAGO — What a buzzkill.
With festivities starting early Friday morning for the first World Series game at Wrigley Field since 1945, the Indians ruined the party with a 1-0 win.
Veteran Coco Crisp drove in the only run with a pinch-hit bloop single in the seventh, and four Indians pitchers combined on the shutout to give Cleveland a two games to one advantage with Game 4 tonight. The Indians will send ace Corey Kluber to the mound.
Friday's game was scoreless until the seventh, when the Indians cobbled a rally.
Roberto Perez led off with a single. With top reliever Andrew Miller due up fourth in the inning because of a double switch, manager Terry Francona had No. 8 hitter Tyler Naquin bunt pinch-runner Michael Martinez to second. A wild pitch by Carl Edwards sent Martinez to third, as Rajai Davis drew a walk.
Francona then gave up his biggest weapon in taking out Miller after he had gotten only four outs, but Crisp delivered the one-out hit.
The Cubs had several chances, including a two-out triple by Jorge Soler in the seventh, but couldn't convert.
Both teams had to deal with an inconsistent strike zone called by home-plate umpire John Hirschbeck. Neither starter made it through the fifth despite posting zeroes across: Cleveland's Josh Tomlin, who would start again Tuesday if there's a Game 6, throwing 58 pitches over 42/3; Chicago's Kyle Hendricks 85 over 41/3.
Members of both teams were awed by the festive scene. Fans not only packed the streets around the old stadium all day but those who didn't have tickets — some going for $3,000 — lining up before dawn, and in some cases, paying hundreds just to get seats in the nearby bars.
"So the whole moment I think is spectacular is the best way I could describe it," Cubs manager Joe Maddon said. "It's different in all the best ways, and it should be absolutely a blast here."
He said he would make a point to savor the scene: "You've got to appreciate the moment and what you're actually going through right now. The sin would be to not do that and have it go so quickly that you don't actually enjoy it."
KLUBER FACTOR: Kluber will start for the second time this postseason on three days' rest. Kluber, who dominated the Cubs over six innings in Tuesday's opener, said the compressed scheduled won't have much impact on his preparations much.
"Just basically doing the same stuff in one less day," the Stetson University product said. "I don't really feel like the last time I did it made a big difference in the way I felt the day I pitched."
BEANIE DELAY: Maddon's mom, Beanie, was traveling from Hazleton, Pa., but her flight was delayed leaving Philadelphia due to a fire at Chicago's O'Hare airport. She and Maddon's niece and nephew landed shortly before game time and, with an escort from the airport, made it in during the second inning.
SERIES SCENE: Actor Bill Murray sang Take Me Out to the Ball Game, and celebrities in the stands included actors Jon Hamm, Jim Belushi and Jeff Garlin; musicians Eddie Vedder and Tom Morello; and Bulls star Dwyane Wade. Cubs Hall of Famer Billy Williams threw out the first pitch.
MISCELLANY: Francona opted for offense given the DH-less NL rules, starting former catcher and occasional first baseman Carlos Santana to leftfield. … Maddon started right-handed hitting Jorge Soler in rightfield ahead of slumping lefty swinger Jason Heyward. … Mets OF Curtis Granderson was named recipient of the Roberto Clemente Award. …First-pitch temperature was an unseasonably warm 62 degrees. … Francona committed to RHP Trevor Bauer to start Game 5 on Sunday, confident that the cut on his right pinkie can withstand any potential additional stress of hitting.