Main menu


Yankees vs. The Guardians: Breaking down each team's shooting situation for the decisive ALDS Game 5 after the rain

featured image

NEW YORK — The New York Yankees and Cleveland Guardians will have to wait another day to decide their ALDS matchups. Winner takes all 5. Game postponed due to rain on Monday night. The game will take place on Tuesday at 4:07 PM ET. The winner continues to face the Houston Astros in the ALCS starting Wednesday. The loser goes home.

“If you had told me to go back in, I don’t know March, we just signed up to play Game 5 in New York to go to the ALCS, I’d run to New York,” Guardians manager Terry Francona said. Game 4.

Game 5 is the second postponement of ALDS. Game 2 was postponed and Games 2-4 were played three days in a row. Game 5 would be four games in four days. The procrastination gives both bullfighters – and both teams in general – a little extra rest before playing a win or a homecoming contest.

With all that in mind, let’s take a post-rain stockpile of each team’s shooting status towards Game 5 on Tuesday.

Beginner shooters: Nestor Cortes vs. TBA

Right-handed Jameson Taillon and Aaron Civale were originally scheduled to start Game 5 on Monday night, but due to rain, the Yankees and Guardians had the option to use Game 2 starters Nestor Cortes and Shane Bieber for three days. ‘Rest on Tuesday. Cleveland will announce the Game 5 start on Tuesday. The Yankees have confirmed that Cortes will begin.

On Monday afternoon, Guardians manager Terry Francona stated that Bieber won’t be back on the field unless he reaches the ALCS, but it should be tempting to be able to use him during a short rest in Game 5. Bieber made a good debut with his two postseason starts and is Cleveland’s top pitcher. Even with a short rest, it gives the team the best chance of winning Game 5 and continuing to play.

Generally speaking, those who started short rest fatigue earlier hit the wall at 75-80 pitches rather than being good for 100 or more pitches. Even then, getting 75 or more pitches from Cortes (or Bieber) is better than the alternative. The Taillon and Civale were expected to be kept on short leashes, so on the Cortes (or Bieber) a shorter leash starter wouldn’t change the plan much.

In Game 2, Cortes kept the Guardians two runs out of five innings and dominated them at two regular season starts (three runs in 12 1/3 innings). However, he will rest briefly, and the Guardians will see him for the second time in less than a week. Fatigue and familiarity can turn the pendulum in favor of the beaters.

“I trust who he is and his makeup and I know he’s going to go out there and compete really well,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said of Cortes before Game 2 kicked off. “It’s like that’s what he does best, he likes to play the game. He’s super competitive and I know he won’t be scared. He’s going to lift his head and let the chips fall where they can.”

Bieber has never taken a short break in his career, and the Guardians took care of him after last season’s shoulder injury – he made 17 of his 31 regular season starts with extra rest. He kept the Yankees in two rounds in 5 2/3 innings in Game 2 and was excellent after allowing Giancarlo Stanton’s two running homers in the first round.

Bullpen status: A much-needed break for New York

passport image

passport image

Cleveland’s bullpen was in much better shape than New York’s going into Game 5. The Guardians didn’t use setup man Trevor Stephan or James Karinchak or closer Emmanuel Clase in Games 3 and 4, so all three will go into Game 5 with a three-day rest. This prepares them to go for multiple hits. Francona’s ideal shot plan, possibly a starter that no one else was involved in (Civale or Bieber), from Stephan to Karinchak to Clase.

The Yankees, on the other hand, have worked hard for their key relaxers over the past few days, and the procrastination has given their best man a much-needed sigh. They used five different relaxers in the entire series (except Taillon in Game 2). Miguel Castro, Domingo Germán and Lucas Luetge are on the ALDS roster but have yet to appear on the field. Check out the field numbers for New York’s best substitutes heading into Game 5 scheduled for Monday:

2-4. In games, Peralta became the first Yankees saver to pitch three days in a row this season, and while he’s claimed to be in Game 5, four straight days of pitching rarely happen in baseball. Peralta gets some rest and gets back together with Cleveland’s biggest left-wing power threats, Josh Naylor and Andrés Giménez. He’s faced them in every game in this series and left them helpless.

Holmes arguably didn’t get into a save position in Game 3 and may have cost the Yankees the game. Later, Boone said he would only use Holmes in an emergency due to a recent shoulder injury and they didn’t want to push him for days in a row. However, Boone said that although Holmes did shoot in Game 4, he would be available in Game 5. Now the rain gives him a day to rest.

“Yes, yes,” Boone said on Sunday about using Holmes in Games 4 and 5 on consecutive days. “Tomorrow, yes, win or go home, yes.”

Gerrit Cole, who shot 110 in seven innings in Game 4 on Sunday, He told Boone he was available Monday.. Boone said he’d be hesitant to use him the day after the start, but now that Cole will have a day off, it’s becoming more realistic to use him outside of the bullring for a shot. If the compulsion comes, don’t be surprised to see Cole on the mound on Tuesday.

The Yankees were gearing up to enter Game 5 on Monday with some bullfighting concerns given the recent workloads of their top aid arms. Now these guys have a night to rest. They’re not as rested as Stephen, Karinchak, and Clase would be for Cleveland, but they are. On paper, the Guardians still have the bullfight advantage given their workload, but that advantage won’t be as great on Tuesday as it would be Monday.