There aren't many things in baseball more exciting than a deciding game in a postseason series. Luckily, we will be treated to three over the next two days, beginning with tonight in The Bronx. Doug Fister and the Detroit Tigers will battle Ivan Nova and the New York Yankees in Game 5 of their ALDS.
The winner tonight will face the Texas Rangers in the ALCS beginning Saturday night. If the Yankees win, the Rangers will open the series in New York, but if Detroit wins tonight they will head to Arlington as Texas will have home field advantage.
Yankees ace CC Sabathia will be available tonight in relief if needed, but Tigers top banana Justin Verlander will not be available. As Jim Leyland said, per ESPN New York: "(Max) Scherzer is my Sabathia tonight. I think you're forgetting that Scherzer did a pretty good job against this team (on Sunday in Game 2), and he's rested better. That's just the way it is.''
The Yankees are 5-3 all-time in Game 5 of a best-of-five series, including 3-0 at home. Their Game 5 wins at home came in the 1976 ALCS (the Chris Chambliss walk-off home run), the 1981 ALCS against Milwaukee, and the 2001 ALDS against Oakland. You may have seen highlights of the last game in the beginning of the movie Moneyball. New York is 11-10 all-time in winner take all games.
The Tigers' only previous Game 5 of a best-of-five series was a loss to Oakland in the 1972 ALCS. Detroit is 2-4 all-time in winner take all contests.
Game Time: 5:07 p.m.