Astros at Twins, 11:08 AM PDT, TV: ABC (ABC? Really? When’s the last time ABC broadcast baseball? The network is going to draft some broadcasters from its sister cable network ESPN)
Two old friends start against one another: RHP Zack Greinke for the Astros meets RHP Kenta Maeda of the Twins. Greinke’s first five starts netted him a 1-0 record with a 1.84 ERA. He then fell off a cliff, going 2-3 with a 5.73 ERA in his last seven outings. Maeda will make his first postseason start since 2016 (he made 21 postseason relief appearances for the Dodgers from 2017-2019), and he earned it. He was 6-1 with a 2.70 ERA for the season.
White Sox at Athletics, 12:08 PM PDT, TV: ESPN
The White Sox hand the ball to RHP Lucas Giolito; he’ll make his 85th career start but first ever in Oakland. He was 4-3 with a 3.48 ERA this season. He’ll face LHP Jésus Luzardo, who was 3-2 with a 4.12 ERA and 59 Ks (second among AL rookies) for the year.
Blue Jays at Rays, 2:07 PM PDT, TV: TBS
RHP Matt Shoemaker (0-1, 4.71 ERA) is a surprise starter for the Jays, one who’s not expected to go deep into the game. He’ll face the Rays’ LHP Blake Snell (4-2, 3.24 ERA). Shoemaker was held out of his last regularly scheduled start to keep him fresh for this game. Snell faced the Blue Jays twice this year and surrendered just two runs to them over 7 2/3 innings.
Yankees at Indians, 4:08 PM PDT, TV: ESPN
The Yankees signed RHP Gerrit Cole last offseason for just this event: Game One of a postseason series. Cole did his part, leading the team in wins, starts, complete games, innings and strikeouts. He wound up 7-3 with a 2.84 ERA. He’s gone 6-4 with a 2.60 ERA in his postseason career. The Indians counter with RHP Shane Bieber (8-1, 1.63 ERA). He came close to postseason experience in 2018: he was scheduled to start Game Four of the Division Series that season but the Indians were swept in three games by the Astros.