Pocket Aces: Bieber, Cole Square Off As Yankees Play Indians

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Shane Bieber's first playoff appearance for Cleveland will come against the team that personifies postseason baseball excellence.
CLEVELAND:

All those pinstripes. The roll call of Hall of Famers. The 27 World Series titles. The history.

Here comes the New York Yankees and all their autumnal aura.

No pressure.

Bieber and the Indians are ready.

Were fired up, said the cool right-hander and lock to win the AL Cy Young Award. We think this is a good matchup.

Just a few miles from where Donald Trump and Joe Biden will square off in the first presidential debate on Tuesday night, Bieber and New York's Gerrit Cole meet in a Game 1 marquee meeting of two of the game's best pitchers as this shortened, odd-ball season enters what could be a wild wild-card round.

The 60-game sprint is about to speed up some more as the 16-team bracket will be chopped quickly in half by best-of-three series. There is no margin for error each pitch, each out, each inning is magnified maybe like never before in the pandemic playoffs.

Every game, you have to treat it is a must-win, Indians acting manager Sandy Alomar Jr. said.

And because of the condensed schedule, the Indians and Yankees will be meeting for the first time in 2020.

Yeah, its a strange year overall, said Alomar, who has filled in while manager Terry Francona tackled some medical issues.

Pitching will be more of a premium than ever, which is why the Indians feel so good confident because Bieber will get them started.

Nobody's been better in 2020 than the 25-year-old Bieber, who pulled off a rare triple crown by leading the league in…
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