Cubs make it to NLCS for 1st time in 12 years

By JAY COHEN, AP Sports Writer

CHICAGO (AP) — When it was over, Anthony Rizzo jumped around Wrigley Field and hugged everybody in sight. The impulse was in his grasp, and he was dynamic to reason onto it for as prolonged as possible.

The All-Star slugger endured several seasons of losing with a Chicago Cubs before they finally got into a playoffs again, and he was some-more than prepared to suffer a franchise’s initial entrance in a NL Championship Series in some-more than a decade.

“Obviously times weren’t easy a final few years, though with all a talent we had and all a talent we were building, everybody knew that a Cubs were coming,” a soaked Rizzo pronounced as he distinguished Chicago’s clinching 6-4 feat over St. Louis in a NL Division Series on Tuesday, “and we’re here, and hopefully we can keep this thing going.”

Rizzo, Javier Baez and Kyle Schwarber homered as a Cubs finished off a opposition Cardinals with their third uninterrupted win, heading to a furious stage on a inside and outward of their century-plus-old area ballpark. It was a initial time they had clinched a postseason array during Wrigley, and a North Siders savored a fulfilment — during slightest for one night.

Much of a raucous, towel-waving throng of 42,411 lingered as manager Joe Maddon acted for a selfie with his wife, and Jon Lester sprayed champagne with his immature son. Rocker Eddie Vedder partied on a mound.

President Barack Obama — who roots for Chicago’s other group — got in on a celebration, too, tweeting his congratulations and observant “even @whitesox fans are rooting for you!”

“We’re going to applaud this. We merit to applaud this,” Rizzo said. “It’s been a prolonged time entrance for this city, and hopefully it’s usually a pointer of things to come.”

The feat in Game 4 allows Chicago to line adult ace pitchers Jake Arrieta and Jon Lester for a commencement of a NLCS this weekend. The Dodgers kick a Mets 3-1 on Tuesday night and will play Game 5 of their multiplication array on Thursday in Los Angeles.

The leader hosts a Cubs on Saturday in a opener of Chicago’s initial NLCS given 2003.

“This apparently right now is unequivocally rewarding, though we have a integrate some-more array and hopefully we can applaud like this dual some-more times,” Chicago third baseman Kris Bryant said.

The Cubs had a fibre of 5 uninterrupted losing seasons before they went 97-65 this year. But it was usually good adequate for third in a rival NL Central, with St. Louis winning a vital league-best 100 games and Pittsburgh finishing second.

The NL playoffs non-stop with Arrieta tossing a five-hit shutout in a wild-card diversion opposite a Pirates, and a Cubs usually kept on rolling opposite a Cardinals. After a 4-0 detriment to John Lackey in a array opener, Rizzo and association clubbed 10 homers in a final 3 games.

“It’s a contrition that 3 of a best teams in baseball, one is usually relocating on to a championship series,” Rizzo said. “I’ve pronounced that all along, dual unimaginable clubs we usually beat, a Pirates, who have an unimaginable classification and a same with a Cardinals. We usually kick a unequivocally good team.”

St. Louis, that had done it to a NLCS for 4 true years, also was impressed.

“I will be repelled if they’re not in a World Series or winning it,” Cardinals rookie Stephen Piscotty said. “They’re personification well. You got to tip your hat.”


Jay Cohen can be reached during

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