Both teams swept through their AL Division Series matchups, with the Blue Jays taking down the Texas Rangers and the Indians beating the Boston Red Sox. In Game 3 Cecil bounced back, once again facing off against Odor, but this time forcing a pop fly to Josh Donaldson, ending the inning and holding the game in a tie. “That”s not the last time it”s going to get hairy in the ninth inning.”.
Cecil only saw two batters in the NLDS, walking the impossibly aggressive Rougned Odor in Game 2 before relenting to Jason Grilli for the third out in a suspenseful seventh inning. Right-fielder Jose Bautista can also sub for starter Edwin Encarnacion at first if needed.
The Giants want Madison Bumgarner to stick around.
Hot bats: Josh Donaldson has been hitting everything, batting.500 through four games, although he has only 3 RBIs to show for it and 0 home runs, but does have 5 doubles. If the Indians get to the bullpen with a lead, they’ll win this series. It will be up to John Gibbons how to best utilize these arms, and with the switch-hitting capabilities in the Cleveland lineup, it could turn into a tightrope walk very quickly. Game 4, and how it affects Games 3 and 5, might be the biggest key to the series.
Devon’s Knee: Devon Travis was scratched from Game 2 of the Division Series with a bone bruise in his right knee.
He’s expected to be cleared from the concussion protocol on Friday in time for Game 1. The Cubs won 1-0 with a solo home run in the bottom of the eighth by Javier Baez. And it seems that this team is in the middle of something special. “It’s not just two, three, four guys that can hurt you”. He entered in the fifth inning in Game 1 and the sixth in Game 3, but Francona has proven he is willing to go to Miller whenever the outs are most crucial. It’s a hitting ball club. Miller has not allowed a run in 12 1/3 innings over eight career postseason appearances. They only need to look back at last year’s playoffs for an example, when they won an emotional series against Texas, only to lose the first two games to Kansas City in the ALCS, before falling in six.
Back to the AL, where we already know who will be playing in the ALCS. That year, the Blue Jays met the Braves in the World Series, and Howarth said that the First Nation member found the repeated use of the Atlanta team’s moniker to be deeply offensive. The Indians figure to lean heavily on their bullpen against a Toronto lineup that can spook even the game’s surest throwers. Roberto Osuna, dealing with a sore shoulder to start the series, allowed one hit and struck out four in 3 ⅔ innings of work against Texas. That doesn’t mean the Blue Jays haven’t faced him this year.
Fresh off their sweep of the Boston Red Sox, the Tribe is looking to keep their postseason rolling against another potent offense in what could be a series for the ages. The homestanding Indians earned home field for the series on the last day of the regular season. “There is no magic formula”.
Now, the stakes are raised, and the Indians face a new challenge with their pitching situation in a seven-game series following the injuries to starters Carlos Carrasco and Danny Salazar.