Chicago Cubs vsPittsburgh Pirates live

The Major League Baseball playoffs continue Wednesday, and fans can watch live online when the Chicago Cubs travel to Pittsburgh to face the Pirates in the one-game National League Wild Card Playoff, with the winner moving on to face the St. Louis Cardinals in the NL Division Series starting Friday — and the loser packing their bags and waiting ’til next year.

The matchup features two franchises who were among the original eight National League teams, but they have never faced each other in postseason play until now.

The Pirates had the better record in the 2015 season by one game, but the Cubs won the 19-game season series between the two NL Central rivals, winning 11 times to eight for Pittsburgh. But the Pirates will have an especially steep hill to climb in order to advance in the postseason — a hill in the form of Cubs righty Jake Arrieta, the National League’s most dominant pitcher throughout the second half of the season.

Arrieta finished the season at 22-6 with an eye-popping 1.77 ERA. But perhaps most impressive is how he finished the season, allowing just four earned runs over his final 11 starts — a total of 82 1/3 innings with an ERA of 0.43 in that span.

Arrieta has also dominated the Pirates this year, facing them five times and allowing a mere four runs in 36 innings pitched, an ERA of 0.75. Adding insult to injury, the last time Arrieta pitched against the Cubs, on September 27 at Wrigley Field in Chicago, not only did he pitch seven innings allowing just one hit and no runs — he blasted a home run himself, to basically win the game single-handedly.

Jake Arrieta of the Chicago Cubs
Jake Arrieta of the Chicago Cubs

To find out how to watch the Chicago Cubs vs. Pittsburgh Pirates National League Wild Card Playoff Game live online, see the streaming information in the final paragraph of this article. First pitch is scheduled for 8 p.m. Eastern Time at PNC Park in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, on Wednesday, October 7 — 5 p.m. Pacific Time.

The Pirates counter with an ace pitcher of their own in right-hander Gerrit Cole, whose stellar year put him among the Cy Young Award contenders in the National League — but still fell well short of what Arrieta was able to accomplish.

Cole won 19 games against just eight losses with an excellent 2.60 ERA. The 25-year-old, picked first overall by the Pirates in the 2011 Major League amateur draft out of UCLA, faced the Cubs five times in 2015, giving up 11 runs in 31 1/3 innings for a respectable 2.59 ERA. But Cole says that he is excited by the prospect of going up against Arrieta in what, on paper anyway, shapes up to be a nail-biting pitchers duel.

“I feel like when you’re in these situations, you want to face the best,” Cole told USA Today on Tuesday. “You work so hard to put yourself in position to have these opportunities, and it doesn’t feel any better than going up against the best.”

Gerrit Cole of the Pittsburgh Pirates
Gerrit Cole of the Pittsburgh Pirates

The Cubs have not won a World Series in 107 years, since a team with the storied “Tinker to Evers to Chance” double play combination defeated the Ty Cobb-led Detroit Tigers in the 1908 Series. More recently, the Cubs have not appeared in the postseason since 2008.

The Pirates are making their third straight postseason appearance after a two-decade drought after losing the National League Championship Series to the Atlanta Braves in 1992. The Pirates last won a World Series in 1979.

To watch the Chicago Cubs vs. Pittsburgh Pirates National League Wild Card Playoff Game live online, go to the WatchTBS site at this link. Login credentials from a cable or satellite provider will be required to access the live stream. To watch the Cubs vs. Pirates game on mobile devices, download the WatchTBS app