The New York Yankees and Tampa Bay Rays will conclude their best-of-five American League Division Series on Friday night at San Diego's Petco Park. New York stayed alive with a Game 4 win on Thursday, and now the two AL East rivals will play a win-or-go-home Game 5 with an ALCS spot on the line. Friday's winner moves on to face the Astros. The ALCS begins Sunday.
Let's set the scene for Game 5 with the essentials.
How to watch
Date: Friday, Oct. 9 | Time: 7:10 p.m. ET
Location: Petco Park (San Diego, California)
TV: TBS | Stream: TBS app
Odds: NYY -153; TBR +143; O/U: 7.5
Pitchers: RHP Gerrit Cole vs. RHP Tyler Glasnow
Follow: CBS Sports App
Because there are no in-series off days during the LDS and LCS this year, both teams will send a starter to the mound on short rest in Game 5. The Yankees are going with Cole, their $324 million ace who pitched well in Game 1. It will be the first short rest start of his career. "Give me the ball," Cole reportedly told manager Aaron Boone on Thursday. New York's top three relievers (Zack Britton, Aroldis Chapman, Chad Green) all threw 20-plus pitches in Game 4, but will surely be available in Game 5 (Green has pitched back-to-back days, it should be noted).
As for the Rays, they are going with Glasnow, who threw 93 pitches in five innings in Game 2 on Tuesday. Friday would be his usual between-starts throw day, so it makes sense from that perspective, though it seems unlikely the Rays would ask him to make a full start in Game 5. More likely, he will be a one- or two-inning opener, then Tampa will hand it over to the bullpen. Game 1 starter Blake Snell is a candidate to chew up multiple innings in the middle of the game.
I picked the Rays to win the series and I'm not going to change it up now. Tampa has flustered the Yankees with openers and bullpen games several times over the years, and in Game 5, they're throwing Glasnow and Snell at them in that format, not middle relievers. The ball has been flying in Southern California this postseason, so count on one big home run deciding the game in the late innings. It would be the drama this rivalry deserves.