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VOTE: Pick the Yankees’ ALDS opponent and Game 1 starter

In an ideal world, how would you rule on these playoff decisions?

Minnesota Twins v New York Yankees Photo by Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/Getty Images

Welcome to SB Nation Reacts, a survey of fans across Major League Baseball. Throughout the year we ask questions of the most plugged-in New York Yankees fans and fans across the country. Sign up here to participate.

The Yankees have worked hard to win almost 100 games, and with the second-best record in the American League, they clinched a bye past the new Wild Card Series to advance straight to the Division Series. So for the next week, they’ll just be biding their time, playing out the final regular series games and waiting out the first-round results.

As of the time of writing, the Yankees have three possible playoff opponents for the ALDS: the AL Central-winning Guardians, and the Wild Card entry Mariners and Rays. (The Blue Jays have already guaranteed that they’ll be on the Astros’ side of the bracket.) The last days of the regular season will determine seeding between Seattle and Tampa Bay, so we’ll leave both in the poll for now. Cleveland will face one of them in the Wild Card Series, and the winner will fly to New York for ALDS Game 1 on Tuesday, October 11th. If you got to pick, which team would you want the Yankees to play?

And speaking of Game 1, who should the Yankees use as their starting pitcher? They’re fortunate enough to have two great options: perennial All-Star/strikeout artist Gerrit Cole and the steady, crafty lefty Nestor Cortes (who also made the Midsummer Classic in 2022). There are good arguments to be made for both. But if you were Aaron Boone, who would you choose?