Indians’ pitcher Shane Bieber had a tough night. In their series and playoff opener against the New York Yankees, the Yankees batters, led by Aaron Judge, jumped on Bieber right away with Judge hitting a two-run homer in the first. “The first inning didn’t go as planned,” Bieber said. “I wish I would have been with my off-speed stuff in the zone, and challenged those guys a little more. I forced myself into some bad situations and some bad counts on top of not having my best stuff and making mistakes.”

Following Judge’s lead, Yankees batters Gleyber Torres, Giancarlo Stanton and Brett Gardner all had home runs at different points throughout the game. “We scored quite a few runs,” said Gardner, who hit a two-run homer in the seventh and drove in three. “I don’t think you ever expect that against a pitcher the caliber of Shane Bieber. Hopefully, that’s a sign of more good things to come.” If the Indians want a chance in this series they have to recover quickly with game two being played on Wednesday night.

It’s a common trope that a couple of teams every MLB postseason get hot in the batting box and lead their team to a World Series or at least a deep playoff run. This is a good start for the Yankees, who always have championship aspirations, but it may be more difficult to keep the heat turned up with this years’ expanded playoff format. “We had a big, long hitter’s meeting about all sticking to the same plan and just trying to work counts, get pitches to drive and I think, as a whole, we did that,” Judge said. “That’s when this team is dangerous when we go out there and we can just grind out at-bats.”

Chat With uSports On Facebook! Get latest news and interviews delivered directly to your Messenger!