Listen, we know it’s tough to catch up on everything happening in the baseball world each morning. There are all kinds of stories, rumors, game coverage, and Vines of dudes getting hit in the beans every day. Trying to find all of it while on your way to work or sitting at your desk just isn’t easy. It’s OK, though, we’re going to do the heavy lifting for you each morning, and find the things you need to see from within the SB Nation baseball network, as well as from elsewhere. Please hold your applause until the end, or at least until after you subscribe to the newsletter.
* * *
Every day that goes by is just more proof that 2016 is a strange year. Based purely on history, there was no World Series matchup more unlikely than Cubs-Indians, and yet we are just three wins from the former team advancing and two from the latter from that very scenario playing out. Cleveland has been a legitimate juggernaut thus far in the postseason, sweeping Boston in the ALDS and taking the first two from Toronto in the ALCS. On Saturday, they rode another great start from Josh Tomlin, who now has two great postseason outings against two of the league’s best lineups.
In Chicago, it looked for a moment like Cubs fans were about to be heartbroken again. Everything started out dandy for the best team in baseball as Jon Lester limited the damage despite some hard contact thanks to the stout defense behind him. The Cubs got on the board early with three runs in the first two innings, including a tally mark from Javy Baez stealing home. Then, the Dodgers started to rally against the Cubs bullpen and eventually tied the game in the eighth off of Aroldis Chapman. Once again, however, this just feels like a different year as the Cubs scored five runs in the eighth including a two-strike, two-out go-ahead grand slam by pinch hitter Miguel Montero.
Cleveland gets a day off before trying to continue their postseason dominance. The good news for the Blue Jays is that while the Indians were one of the league’s best teams at home, they were much different on the road. The bad news is the Indians get their number two starter back in Trevor Bauer after he missed his last start with an injury that resulted from repairing a drone. The Cubs, meanwhile, continue their series against the Dodgers Sunday night. In this one, Clayton Kershaw will look to keep reversing the narrative surrounding his postseason performance.
- The bad news from the Blue Jays is they lost Devon Travis for the rest of the postseason. The good news is the league allowed them to replace him on the ALCS roster.
- On the NLCS side of things, both teams have important pieces of the late-2000’s Rays. Which side should Tampa fans root for to justify their legacy?
- As the Yankees look to rebuild their bullpen after dealing key pieces this winter, they should look to Los Angeles for a blueprint. Or, ya know, spend a bunch of money again.
- Keith Law got a look at Tim Tebow last week. He....uh....he wasn’t impressed.
- The qualifying offer was officially announced the other day at $17.2 million. That squealing you’ve been hearing is Jeremy Hellickson.
- Madison Bumgarner is still under contract for a couple more years, but the Giants would like to get another extension done sooner than later.
- Coming off one of the quietest 30-home-run seasons in recent memory, what can we expect from Jedd Gyorko moving forward?
- The Braves were one of the worst teams in the league this year, but their coaching staff could be mined for managerial openings.
- The Marlins are probably going to trade Giancarlo Stanton at some point, aren’t they?
- In Pittsburgh, the Pirates would like to move John Jaso across the diamond. As long as he keeps the dreads, he can play where ever he wants.