The Cleveland Indians take on the wild-card New York Yankees in a winner-takes-all Game 5 Wednesday night at Progressive Field.
After winning the first two games in Cleveland, the Indians have dropped the last two in New York, including Monday night’s 7-3 loss.
Cy Young candidate Corey Kluber will get the start against former Cleveland Indians pitcher CC Sabathia.
Kluber went 18-4 during the regular season, but the Yankees got to him in Game 2 of the ALDS for six runs and seven hits in only 2 2/3 innings. Despite the unusual start, the team is still confident with Kluber on the mound.
“It’s hard to imagine giving it to someone better,” said Manager Terry Francona. “We go to Game 5, we’re home, and we have Kluber. We’re looking forward to it.”
The front four batters for the Indians have struggled recently, especially in Monday night’s loss. Francisco Lindor, Jason Kipnis, Jose Ramirez, and Jay Bruce went a combined 1 for 14 Monday against the Yankees. Cleveland will need better production from the heavy hitters if they stand a chance against Sabathia.
“What we ultimately care about is when it’s over, we’re one run better than them, however we do it. But it makes it easier when the guys up top are setting the tempo.”
Francona said the players will have an optional workout on Tuesday after traveling back to Cleveland.
“Some guys need the rest, and we’ll start getting excited for the game,” Francona said.
Game 5 between the Cleveland Indians and the New York Yankees is Wednesday night in Cleveland at 8:08 p.m.
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