David D’Annibale, Staff Writer |
For the fourth straight season, the Yankees are advancing to the American League Division Series (ALDS) after defeating the Indians on Sept. 30. The Bronx Bombers scored a total of 22 runs and seven home runs in two games. In the first game of the series, the Yankees pitched their ace, Gerrit Cole, and the Indians sent out their top pitcher, Shane Bieber. The game was expected to be one of the top pitching matchups as Bieber dominated opposing hitters all season which led to him winning the pitching triple crown. The same could be said about Cole who help lead the Astros to the World Series last season.
In the first inning, the Yankees took the lead after Aaron Judge hit a two-run home run to give the team a 2-0 lead. At the top of the third inning, the Yankees added another run after a Luke Voit doubled that brought a runner in, extending their lead to 3-0. In the bottom half of the same inning, the Indians scored their first run of the game by a double from Jose Ramirez and the Indians only trailed by two. In the next two innings, the Yankees scored four more runs against Bieber with the biggest hit from Gleyber Torres’ two-run home run the fifth inning. The Yankees put the game out of reach in the seventh inning by rallying to score four more runs extending their lead to 11-2. Both teams scored one more time in the ninth inning and the Yankees won by the final score of 12-3. Bieber allowed seven earned runs over 4.2 innings pitched which is his worst outing of the season. Cole dominated in his outing as he pitched seven innings, allowed two earned runs and struck out 13 batters.
Game two proved to be the best game of the series. At the bottom of the first inning, Cleveland hit a pair of RBI doubles and a single against Mashahiro Tanaka to take the first lead of the game. The next inning, Giancarlo Stanton hit a solo home run to make the score 4-1. At the top of the fourth inning, the Yankees loaded the bases which led to the Indians taking out Carlos Carrasco and putting in the relief pitcher, James Karinchak into the game to face Gio Urshela. After working the count to 3-2, Urshela hit a grand slam to give the Yankees the lead. During the following inning, the Indians tied the game at 6-6 after Ramirez hit a two-run double. It didn’t take long for the Yankees to regain the lead. In the sixth, Gary Sanchez blasted a home run to right field to give his team a two-run lead. The Yankee’s bullpen couldn’t keep the lead as Jordan Luplow hit a two-run double to tie the game in the seventh and gave Cleveland the lead in the eighth inning. Trailing by one in the ninth inning, the Yankees rallied against closer Brad Hand to regain the lead after DJ LeMahieu’s RBI single. Closer Aroldis Chapman closed out the game for the Bombers by striking out three batters and get them to win.
The Yankees will travel to Petco Park in San Diego, CA to take on Division rival, the Tampa Bay Rays. The Rays also swept their opponent the Toronto Blue Jays. The series will include five games if necessary and with the series tied at one-to-one, its anyone’s guess as to who will advance to the American League Championship Series (ALCS) to face off against the winner of the Houston Astros and Oakland Athletics .