But Saturday night’s Game 1 assignment at Dodger Stadium might not be so difficult. Quintana threw only 12 pitches Thursday, which could be equated to a bullpen session before his next start.
Quintana might make the most sense unless the Cubs opt for 38-year-old veteran John Lackey, who didn’t pitch in the NL Division Series but has plenty of postseason experience.
Jake Arrieta, who threw four innings and 90 pitches on Wednesday in his first start in two weeks due to a right hamstring injury, likely won’t be ready until the NLCS returns to Wrigley Field for Game 3 on Tuesday.
Kyle Hendricks also won’t be under consideration to start Game 1 or 2 after throwing four innings and 81 pitches Thursday.
Left-hander Jon Lester, however, could be ready to start Game 2 after throwing 55 pitches and 3 2/3 innings in relief on Wednesday.
In regards to the roster, the Cubs might need another pitcher in this best-of-seven series. The Cubs managed to win Game 5 of the NLDS despite nine walks. Hector Rondon could be added after the Cubs opted to carry outfielder Leonys Martin for the NLDS.