The New York Yankees have played their best with their backs against the wall this postseason, and that remained true in Wednesday's Game 5. After recording back-to-back wins at Yankee Stadium to erase a 2-0 series deficit, the Yankees advanced to the ALCS with a 5-2 win over the Cleveland Indians. Didi Gregorius went deep twice, both against ace Corey Kluber, as the Yankees recorded their fourth straight win in an elimination game. That includes a comeback win over the Minnesota Twins in the Wild Card Game to begin the postseason. The loss ends the season far sooner than expected for The Tribe, who won 102 games in the regular season, which included a franchise-record 22-game win streak. C.C. Sabathia didn't last long enough to earn the win for the Yankees, as David Robertson got the "W" with 2.2 scoreless innings. The lead was at just one for New York, before Brett Gardner singled home a run in the ninth off of Cody Allen. An extra run would score on the play as Jay Bruce's throw got away from shortstop Francisco Lindor, which allowed Todd Frazier to score from first base. The Yankees' comeback sets up a matchup with the Houston Astros in the ALCS, which begins in Houston on Friday. The Astros have named Dallas Keuchel as their Game 1 starter, but the Yankees have not announced who will toe the slab for them. New York dropped five of seven against the Astros during the regular season, but they are hoping the postseason will be an entirely different story.
Hornqvist, Penguins Top Capitals on Rivalry Night
One of the best things about the NHL season is Rivalry Night, which made its debut on Wednesday night with the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Washington Capitals. It was also the season debut of Patric Hornqvist, who led the Penguins past the Capitals 3-2 on the road. Hornqvist recorded two points with a power-play goal and an assist on the night after missing the first three games of the year while recovering from surgery on a broken finger. The veteran was dealing with that injury during last year's playoffs, even while scoring the Stanley Cup-clinching goal last summer. He assisted on Kris Letang's first goal since February 4th, as Letang also missed time last season following neck surgery. Conor Sheary also found the back of the net with the man advantage for the Penguins, who finished the night 3-for-6 on the power play. That success helped them overcome Alex Ovechkin's league-leading eighth goal of the season, which came 7:09 in to the third period. Christian Djoos assisted on that one, and also scored his first career NHL goal in his first career NHL game. He is the third Capitals defenseman to score in his NHL debut, joining the likes of Steve Poapst and Scott Stevens. The loss for the Caps knocks them out of first place in the Metropolitan Division, as them and the Pens sit behind the New Jersey Devils, who remained unbeaten with a 6-3 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Wednesday. Pittsburgh look to continue to overcome their slow start as they will visit the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday. Meanwhile, Washington will visit those unbeaten Devils on Friday night.
Strasburg, Nationals Heading Back Home For Game 5
It was uncertain whether or not Stephen Strasburg would be available to start Wednesday's rescheduled Game 4 due to an illness, but it was announced four hours before the contest that he was good to go. That phrase "good to go" does not come close to describe how he looked on the mound at Wrigley Field. The right-hander struck out 12 in seven shutout innings, as the Washington Nationals forced a Game 5 with a 5-0 shutout of the Chicago Cubs. The Nats were playing with a one-run lead for much of the night after Ryan Zimmerman scored on an Addison Russell error in the third, before Michael Taylor broke things open in the eighth. It was an opposite-field grand slam off the bat of Taylor that sealed the win for the Nats, who will host Game 5 on Thursday night. Unfortunately for Cubs starter Jake Arrieta, he only lasted four innings and walked four in a losing effort, despite only giving up the one unearned run. Jon Lester came in out of the bullpen and had just one run against him in 3.1 innings. The Cubs' loss was their first at home in the postseason since Game 4 of last year's World Series. Meanwhile, Strasburg has proven to have the Cubs' number this postseason, recording 22 strikeouts in 14 NLDS innings. Chicago has committed to starting Kyle Hendricks in the decisive Game 5, while the Nats remain undecided. Reports say it is between Gio Gonzalez and Tanner Roark,