"I know past year when LeBron kind of grabbed the microphone, I think everybody got a kick out of that".
CC Sabathia will face Kluber, the AL's likely Cy Young Award victor, who dominated the Yankees twice in the regular season.
Bauer stopped the Bronx Bombers in their tracks.
Something that doesn't change is Aaron Judge's love for strikeouts, as he picked up four on the night. It was the longest no-hit bid by a Cleveland pitcher in the postseason, bettering Hall of Famers Bob Feller (1948) and Early Wynn (1954), who both went four innings.
After Robertson's 3 ⅓ innings of work, manager Joe Girardi then handed the ball to Tommy Kahnle who would cruise through 2 ⅓ innings to finally give the ball to flamethrower Aroldis Chapman in the 9th, a spot he is definitely used to. "We'll see how it goes from there". You look at his second half, and he had better command. The Twins did manage to get runners on base, but left an astounding 17 runners on base.
Taking the mound to his usual thundering warm-up music, "The Pursuit of Vikings", an intimidating song by Swedish metal band Amon Amarth, Bauer didn't mess around.
First pitch: 7:38 p.m.
Kluber didn't start last year's ALDS opener against Boston, but that was because he was coming off a hamstring injury. "His ability to hit for one of those guys, we view it kind of as a weapon".
With Clevinger and Salazar available for multi-inning stints if needed - plus Andrew Miller - Francona doesn't need Bauer to go deep into the game.
"Being around here for an extended period of time and a few years in a row around the same guys, and experiencing different cultures and different teams year-to-year", he said, "now I'm much more aware of how experience matters, and communication". And the Yankees have the best plan for when the plan falls apart. After being down 3-0 in the first, the Yankees came back with three runs of their own thanks to the swing of shortstop Didi Gregorius.
The Yankees have a ton of firepower with their youngsters and have shown that their offense can get going at any time.
James was a longtime Yankees fan before allegedly switching his allegiance to the Indians.
The Indians acquired Jay Bruce from the Mets in August for virtually nothing. Bauer tipped his cap to the crowd before being congratulated by his teammates. Tanaka is the most unpredictable of the New York Yankees starters, so I would have sent him out there against Kluber, hoping for the best, but hedging my bet if the worst occurred.
"You've got some youth in there with big power", Bauer said. If they can keep that attitude up as the games continue to get bigger, they can play with any team in baseball.
He's doing his part now. He'll start Game 2 on Friday against CC Sabathia. That left us with three teams with 100 or more wins for the first time in a while and there's also more than one other risky team with less a few wins but still a packed roster, The Nationals, The Diamondbacks, and of course those Cubs.
Unaffected by a larger stage, Judge hit a two-run homer in his playoff debut as the Yankees overcame a 3-0 deficit in the first inning and won their first postseason game in five years to earn a best-of-five matchup against the defending AL champions - and the team favored to win it all.