CHICAGO -- The Cleveland Indians came to Chicago needing to beat the Cubs twice at revered Wrigley Field to bring the 2016 World Series back to Progressive Field after splitting the first two games in Cleveland last week.
And that is exactly what they did by taking the first two of the three games at Wrigley. And despite the Indians' 3-2 loss to the Cubs in Game 5 on Sunday night, they still hold a 3-2 lead in the best-of-seven series heading into Tuesday's Game 6 matchup in Cleveland.
"We did what we had to do here," Indians infielder Mike Napoli said. "We put ourselves in position to try to win it in a crazy atmosphere. I'm happy with what we did here and we're going to get home and play in front of our fans.
"It's going to help a lot. We play well at home. We did what we had to do here. We got two out of three. I keep repeating myself, but we did what we wanted to do here and get to play in front of our fans. We put ourselves in a situation to win tonight, but they played a good ball game. It was a good overall baseball game."
The Indians' offense could not get the clutch hits with runners in scoring position late in Game 5 and starting pitcher Trevor Bauer allowed six hits, three earned runs and one home run, which led to the 3-2 loss.
Although the Indians left just four runners on base, two potential game-tying runs were stranded in scoring position in the seventh and eighth innings.
"We wanted to finish it here, but it's just part of the game, you know," Indians shortstop Francisco Lindor said. "They've got a good team. We knew we weren't going to sweep the series. It wasn't going to be easy. Nobody said it was going to be easy, so we've got to play the game the right way and take care of business."
Although the Indians are heading home for Game 6, waiting for them is a matchup against Cubs standout Jake Arrieta, who earned the win in Game 2.
Arrieta was in full command of the baseball diamond for five innings, and as such, kept the Indians' bats silent on the way a 5-1 win last Wednesday night.
Despite allowing three walks, Arrieta threw 5.2 innings of no-hit baseball before giving up two hits to the Indians and being relieved of duty in the bottom of the sixth. Arrieta surrendered only one earned run and struck out six hitters while pitching the Cubs to a 1-1 tie in the World Series.
Arrieta then turned the game over to the bullpen, and Chicago's relievers tossed 3.1 innings of two-hit baseball.
"Hit him better," Napoli said. "There's nothing else to it. We've just got to do what we've been doing, get guys on, run the bases, come through when we have to. We've got J.T. (Josh Tomlin) on the mound and we're confident in what he can do. He's been pitching well the last couple months and we'll see what happens. We're excited to play in front of our Cleveland fans."