In the AL Wild Card Game on Tuesday night, it wasn't time for the Yankees' young core to trust the team's veterans. Who knows where baseball would have gone in the 2000s had NY captured another world title in 2001? A deciding ALDS Game 5, if there is one, would be in Cleveland on Wednesday, Oct. 11.
But, if you are a fan of baseball and don't have a horse in this race, then I would think that you would want to see arguably the best rivalry in baseball in the American League Championship Series (ALCS).
The only bullpen that was more valuable was New York's. Led by Dellin Betances, Aroldis Chapman, and Chad Green, they have been shutting down opposing offenses in the later parts of the ball game. And it's not like the Indians are all pitch, no hit: Cleveland was third in the AL in runs (818), second in batting average (.263) and second in OPS (.788). In his career, Bauer is 3-4 with a 4.28 ERA and 36 strikeouts against the Yankees. Santana gave Minnesota's lead right back to the Yankees in the first on a three-run homer. He was widely criticized in Cleveland for the move, which came three years before his infamous decision to announce on national TV that he was leaving as a free agent for Miami.
No performance was equal in importance to Judge's, who scored three runs and became the third Yankees rookie to homer in his postseason debut. It was time for them to show out. He batted.299 with nine homers and 52 RBIs in 90 games, including.357 with a homer against NY this season. It is no secret that they rely on the long ball for the success of their offense.
This wild card matchup is one for the books.
According to Francona, Cleveland's bullpen will consist of RHP Cody Allen, LHP Andrew Miller, RHP Bryan Shaw, RHP Joe Smith, RHP Danny Salazar, LHP Tyler Olson, RHP Mike Clevinger, with starters Josh Tomlin and Trevor Bauer also possibly pitching in a relief role.
Yankees: One year into a youth movement, the Baby Bombers blossomed fast under 10th-year manager Joe Girardi and returned NY to the postseason perhaps ahead of schedule. "You know I'm a Yankees fan and will stick with them". As great as CC Sabathia has been this year, he's made it past the sixth inning just once in his past 15 starts.
Indians over Nationals in seven: The Indians proved themselves capable of going one step further than a year ago by not only weaving together a record-setting 22-game winning streak, but then following that with a season-ending 11-3 run. Either way, whoever is behind the plate for the Tribe is going to have to contribute in many ways. However, Yan and Roberto are known mainly for their defense.