Thursday, October 12, 2017

Stephen Strasberg, Michael Taylor Help Nationals Tie NLDS With Cubs; Didi Gregorius Powers Yankees Into ALCS

Players of the Day for Wednesday, October 11, 2017

American League

Gregorius: 2 HR, 3 RBI
Almost anything can happen in a five-game series, and, for the Cleveland Indians, what happened in the ALDS with the Yankees will not be soon forgotten.

For the second time in the series, the Yankees - or, rather shortstop Didi Gregorius - got to Cleveland ace and likely Cy Young award winner, Cory Kluber, taking deciding game five by a 5-2 score.

Gregorius got the Yankees started with a solo homer in the first inning, and victimized Kluber again in the third, swatting his second home run of the game, this time with Brett Gardner camped out at first base.

Meanwhile, Yankee starter, C.C. Sabathia was mowing down Indians, retiring the first nine straight before getting bounced on four consecutive hits and two runs in the fifth. Sabathia went 4 1/3 innings, fanning nine. Kluber also had a high strikeout total, whiffing six in his 3 2/3 innings.

Gregorius singled later in the game but was left stranded. The Yankees added a pair of insurance runs in the ninth, completing the comeback from being down two games to none by winning two straight at Yankee Stadium and advancing to the league championship series with Houston by downing Cleveland at Progressive Field.

The ALCS with the Astros begins Saturday in Houston. First pitch is slated for 4:08 pm.

National League

Strasberg: 7 IP, 0 ER, 12 K
The Washington Nationals have battled back from a 2-0 deficit to even the NLDS with the Cubs at two games apiece, getting a gem from flu-stricken Stephen Strasberg and a late grand slam by Michael Taylor for a 5-0 win at Chicago.

Taylor: Grand Slam
Strasberg blanked the Cubs on three hits over seven innings, striking out 12 and walking two. His teammates were able to muster a single run in the third inning, but the capable hurler made it hold up. In the top of the eighth, the Nationals loaded the bases, setting up Taylor for the big whack, putting the game out of reach.

After Taylor's slam, Strasberg turned the ball over to reliever Ryan Madsen, who worked a scoreless eighth inning. Sean Doolittle mopped up with a perfect ninth.

Game five is scheduled for Thursday night, 8:08 pm ET. The winner will open the league championship series on Friday in Los Angeles with the Dodgers.

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