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MLB Playoffs: Indians win best-of-seven showdown 4-1 to reach World Series


10-20-2016 16:17 BJT

To the diamond for the Major League Baseball Playoffs, and Game Five of the A.L. Championship Series. The Cleveland Indians were looking to finish off the Toronto Blue Jays and advance to the World Series for the first time in 19 years.

The Tribe have lost in their last three trips to the Fall Classic, and haven't won a title since 1948. But they would try to take another step towards ending that drought, by closing the curtain on the Canadian club.

The fans at Rogers Centre hoping Toronto can force the series back to Cleveland.

But in the top of the first inning, Mike Napoli drives Marco Estrada's pitch all the way to the wall, and Ezequiel Carrera makes things worse by mishandling the ball. Francisco Lindor comes around to score the first run of the game, as Cleveland take an early 1-0 lead.

The Indians emergency starter, rookie Ryan Merritt, tries to show he belongs by striking out Edwin Encarnacion to end the bottom of the first. Merritt pressed into duty by Trevor Bauer's finger injury.

Estrada looks to keep pace, but Carlos Santana's swing is too "smooth," as the Tribe's first baseman belts his second home run of the series. Estrada might be thinking Santana needs to change his "evil ways," as the Dominican slugger's blast makes it 2-0 in the top of the third.

Marco wouldn't fare any better against Coco Crisp, as the outfielder known mainly for defense takes him deep in the very next inning. Crisp must have eaten his Wheaties, because that was no "sugar smack." The Indians increase their lead to 3-0, and Estrada looks like someone frosted his flakes, as Coco crosses the plate.

The Blue Jays try to rally in the bottom of the sixth, but Cleveland reliever Andrew Miller gets Josh Donaldson to ground into an inning ending double play. Miller with his third hold in the series, and he would be named ALCS MVP, as the Indians hang on for a 3-0 win.

Which they wrap up when Cody Allen gets Troy Tulowitzki to pop the ball foul for the last out of the game, and that sets off a joyous celebration for the visitors in T-Dot, as the Tribe advance to their first World Series since 1997.

Visitors use two homers & two big innings to tie series at 2-2

They await the winners of the NLCS, where Julio Urias and the L.A. Dodgers would host the Chicago Cubs in Game Four.

The Mexican rookie and the home team are down 2-0 in the top of the fourth inning, when Addison Russell yanks that pitch over the wall in right-center for a two-run homer. That's the second-year shortstop's first extra base hit of these playoffs, and it increases the visitors lead to 4-0.

Pedro Baez replaces Urias, but Anthony Rizzo sends his offering to pretty much the same spot in the top of the fifth. The Chicago first baseman's dinger makes it 5-0, and the Cubs would roll to a 10-2 win that ties the series at two contests apiece. Game Five is later today in Los Angeles.

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