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Around the Empire: Yankees news - 10/5/17

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Yankees send Gray to the mound for Game 1; defeating Cleveland will be no easy task; Chapman looks to have figured it out; Andrew Miller impressed by the Yankees’ bullpen; Sir Didi Gregorius is the best

American League Wild Card Game - Minnesota Twins v New York Yankees
The world’s best human
Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

Around the Empire | Brittany Ghiroli: The ALDS starts tonight. The Yankees, after getting past the Twins in the Wild Card one-game Thunderdome match, will be at Progressive Field to take on Cleveland. There was no hotter team at the end of the year and the Yankees need to take three games out of five in order to keep their season alive. Sonny Gray will start tonight. CC Sabathia will start Game 2. Masahiro Tanaka will start Game 3. Luis Severino will start Game 4. Matt Ferenchick will start Game 5, if it comes to that. Let’s do this. In fact, let’s bring back a classic for this one.

go yankees go you are #1 | Mark Feinsand: Classic PSA cheers aside, defeating Cleveland will be no easy task. The Yankees have the second plus run differential in the league, second only to the...well crapbaskets. That probably has to do with Cleveland’s spectacular pitching. Again, no easy task. It’s still a five-game series though and the Yankees also had a spectacular end to the season. Anything is possible.

Fangraphs | Jeff Sullivan: One reason the Yankees’ finished off September well is due to the pitcher who is paid a good amount of money to finish off games. Aroldis Chapman was struggling enough where he was removed from his role as closer until he figured it out. Well, he figured it out. He’s walking less batters and striking them out again. Jeff Sullivan takes a look at how he has seemingly turned it around.

New York Daily News | Peter Botte: As we all witnessed on Tuesday, the Yankees bullpen has been elite. Former elite Yankees’ bullpen pitcher/game enderer Andrew Miller has nothing but praise for their performance against the Twins. Miller is excited to see some of his old teammates again and he is, rudely, excited to try and beat them. Maybe he’ll see the error of his ways and betray Cleveland for New York. Maybe.

The New Yorker | Roger Angell: Sir Didi Gregorius is the world’s best human being. We all know this to be true. Aside from his awesome human being status, Angell describes Sir Didi as the “centerpiece of this suddenly young and thrilling team” and it’s a valid point. You can see it from the Yankees on Demand ads, the dugout interviews, the victory tweets. Aaron Judge may be the face of the team at the moment, but Sir Didi bring such a joyous and fun atmosphere with pretty much every single thing he does. Give this one a read.

Didi Motivational Tweet