Dexter Fowler leads off for the Cubs in Game 3, and he's followed by third baseman Kris Bryant, first baseman Anthony Rizzo, Soler, Zobrist, shortstop Addison Russell, second baseman Javier Baez, Montero and Arrieta.
This will be Soler's first postseason start. The outfielder batted .474 in seven playoff games last year. He was sidelined this year because of a sore right side, and hit .238 in 86 regular-season games. However, expect Soler to be lifted for defensive purposes late in the game. The Cubs have rookie Albert Almora Jr. as an option or they could move Bryant to left.
The odd man out is Jason Heyward, who went 1-for-7 in the first two NLDS games. In his first season in Chicago, Heyward batted .230, including .207 against lefties. Zobrist started 24 games in right field this season. Soler, Zobrist, Almora and Contreras did some work in left field with coach Dave Martinez on Sunday. Right field is the tricky one at AT&T Park because of the indentations in the wall and the brick.
As for the Giants, they made a late lineup change, scratching left fielder Angel Pagan with back spasms and replacing him with Gregor Blanco.
Otherwise, manager Bruce Bochy stuck with the lineup he typically employs against right-handed starting pitchers to face Arrieta.
Center fielder Denard Span and second baseman Joe Panik, both left-handed batters, were again in San Francisco's lineup. They did not start Game 1 against Cubs left-hander Jon Lester but returned to the lineup in Game 2 against Chicago righty Kyle Hendricks.
Trailing in the series, 2-0, the Giants knew they faced a considerable challenge against Arrieta, who owned a 4-2 record with a 1.82 ERA in six career regular-season starts against them. That included a 2-0 mark with a 0.69 ERA in his last two outings at AT&T Park.
"We all know what's at stake," said Bochy, who has experienced 11 consecutive victorious postseason rounds since 2010. He jokingly added, "I'm gonna play the 'Rocky' theme."
Fortunately for the Giants, their Game 3 starter, Bumgarner, never has needed extra motivation. Bumgarner is coming off a four-hit shutout of the Mets in last Wednesday's Wild Card Game, which improved his postseason record to 8-3 with a 1.94 ERA.
Catcher Buster Posey, the Giants' No. 3 hitter, was 1-for-15 (.067) against Arrieta, who also had enjoyed success against shortstop Brandon Crawford (1-for-13, .077), Span (4-for-20, .200) and right fielder Hunter Pence 3-for-13, .231).
Pagan had thrived against Arrieta (5-for-11, .455). So had Panik (2-for-5, .400), though the sample size was much smaller.
NLDS Game 3 lineups:
Dexter Fowler CF
Kris Bryant 3B
Anthony Rizzo 1B
Jorge Soler LF
Ben Zobrist RF
Addison Russell SS
Javier Baez 2B
Miguel Montero C
Jake Arrieta P
Denard Span CF
Brandon Belt 1B
Buster Posey C
Hunter Pence RF
Conor Gillaspie 3B
Brandon Crawford SS
Joe Panik 2B
Gregor Blanco LF
Madison Bumgarner LHP