5. New York Yankees @ 4. Cleveland Indians
Masahiro Tanaka vs. Carlos Carrasco
Wednesday, September 30th, 7:00 pm EST
Game two will be a win-or-go-home game for one of these two teams, and if game one goes the way I personally think it might, it could be the Yankees who are playing with their season on the line.
The good news for the Yankees is that their game two starter, Masahiro Tanaka, finished the 2020 season with a better record than the Indians’ starter, Carlos Carrasco. The bad news for the Yankees is that Carrasco finished with a better ERA.
Overall, the game two starting pitcher duel is rather even between Carrasco and Tanaka and might come down to who’s bats are hotter, and who wants it more.
Tanaka finished the 2020 season with a 3-3 record in 10 starts, a 3.56 ERA in 48 innings pitched, with a 1.167 WHIP and 44 strikeouts. Carrasco finished with a 3-4 record in 12 starts, a 2.91 ERA in 68 innings pitched, with a 1.206 WHIP and 82 strikeouts.
The two pitchers are very similar, and this game might be a battle of the bats more than anything else, which luckily for the Yankees, probably swings in their favor.
The Yankees finished the 2020 season with an average of 5.25 runs per game, while the Indians finished with an average of 4.13 per game. However, the Yankees’ bats have been horrible as of late averaging only two runs per game in their last six losses of the season, and 4.375 runs per game in their last eight games overall.
That being said, while the Yankees’ bats were better over the course of the season, they were pretty bad towards the end of it, and it makes you wonder if they’ll be able to get their act together and win game two, to potentially force a decisive game three.
Prediction: Yankees win 7-4
Game two will be a much higher scoring affair as there won’t be two of the best pitchers on the mound like there will be in game one. The good news for the Yankees is that when it comes to bats, the pendulum swings in their favor.
The bad news for the Yankees is that their bats have been inconsistent at best in the last month of the season. However, if the Yankees lose game one and game two is a win-or-go-home game, I think they’ll get their act together, and get the job done to force a decisive game three.