With help from a dominate performances by Trevor Bauer on the mound and Jay Bruce at the plate, the Cleveland Indians took a 1-0 lead over the New York Yankees in the best-of-five series. To say that Bauer somewhat exceeded expectations in Game 1 may be an understatement.
Let’s take a look at some of the game’s top highlights:
Trevor Bauer set the tone early and made the Yankees realize that he had his good stuff Thursday night. He made Aaron Judge, who is in the running for the AL MVP at season’s end, look foolish and a little lost for his first strikeout of the game. Judge’s knees locked when Bauer’s Knuckle Curve dropped into the strike zone.
With bases loaded and no outs, the Indians could have taken control of the game right away in the second inning. Although they only came away with one run, Roberto Perez drove in a run while grounding into a double play to give the Indians an early 1-0 lead.
When Terry Francona made it known that Jason Kipnis would start in center field for much of the postseason, many people may have been surprised. Although the second-baseman-turned-center-fielder played in the outfield at Arizona State, he hasn’t since coming to the big leagues. In his 12th game in center field this season, you knew eventually that Kipnis was going to be tested. He made the most of it in the third inning with a fantastic diving catch.
At the trade deadline, the Yankees had the opportunity to acquire Jay Bruce. But instead of paying all of his remaining salary this season, they told the Mets that they would only pay for $1 million of his $3.7 million that he had left on his contract. That’s when the Indians stepped in and made the trade with the Mets because they would pay for all of his remaining salary this season. What a trade it was! His two-run home run gave the Indians a 3-0 lead in the fourth inning. With how the Indians were pitching, it almost seemed as though that was the dagger right there.
Even when Bruce isn’t hitting home runs, he still finds ways to get his teammates across home plate. To follow up his home run, Ramirez hit a sacrifice fly to left-center to give Cleveland a 4-0 lead.
After allowing his first hit of the game in the sixth inning to end his no-hit bid, Bauer got quite the standing ovation from the sold out crowd at Progressive Field.
Judge may be in the running for the AL MVP, but Bauer made him look silly all night long. The rookie refused to swing at any of the pitcher’s slow stuff and Bauer struck him out looking. It was Judge’s third strikeout of the game.
Bauer gave up just his second hit, but Tito decided to pull him in place of Andrew Miller after the right-hander gave the Indians a scoreless outing and allowed just two hits in 6.2 innings. Once again, Bauer received a well-deserved
Not one, not two, not three, but four strikeouts for Aaron Judge. This one came against Cody Allen. Whether it was the starter or the closer, Indians pitchers made quite the debut in the 2017 postseason.
The Indians may have taken a 1-o lead in the best-of-five series, but the two teams will get right back at it tomorrow. First pitch for Game 2 is set for 5:08 p.m. ET. Indians ace and most likely Cy Young winner Corey Kluber will go against former Indians lefty CC Sabathia.