Tuesday featured two postseason games as Game 5 of the American League Division Series between Cleveland and New York had been postponed due to poor weather in New York. San Diego hosted Philadelphia for Game 1 of the National League Championship Series.
WP: Nestor Cortes
LP: Aaron Civale
Civale, who had been scheduled to start on Monday, took the mound for Cleveland instead of Shane Bieber, who was available for relief duty. Cortes took the hill for the Yankees on three days’ rest. Civale lacked command, issuing a leadoff walk to Gleyber Torres and hitting Anthony Rizzo with a 2-2 cutter in the opening frame. Giancarlo Stanton stepped in and lined another 88 mph Civale cutter into right center field to give New York an immediate 3-0 lead.
Cleveland’s lone run came on a 3rd inning sacrifice fly by José Ramírez. The Yankees had fewer hits than the Guardians but took advantage of their opportunities with the help of the long ball to advance to the American League Championship Series.
WP: Zack Wheeler
LP: Yu Darvish
Two Wild Card teams touched by postseason magic faced off in the series opener. The game was scoreless until the 4th inning when Bryce Harper lifted a Darvish four-seamer over the left field fence for a solo home run. Kyle Schwarber added another solo shot in the 6th inning.
Darvish pitched seven innings of two-run ball but was outdueled by Wheeler, who threw seven scoreless. The Padres could not muster up any late runs and were shut out in Game 1.
Action resumes Wednesday, starting with Philadelphia at San Diego at 4:35 PM ET. The probable pitchers are Aaron Nola (regular season: 11-13, 3.25 ERA) for Philly and 2018 Cy Young Award winner Blake Snell (regular season: 8-10, 3.38 ERA) for San Diego. Houston will host New York in the prime-time matchup at 7:37 PM ET. Jameson Taillon (regular season: 14-5, 3.91 ERA) will have the ball for New York against active legend Justin Verlander (regular season: 18-4, 1.75 ERA) for Houston.
Featured Image: Oakland, California – August 28, 2021. New York Yankees’ Giancarlo Stanton bats against the Oakland Athletics at RingCentral Coliseum by Conor P. Fitzgerald / Shutterstock.com.