Tanaka will start Friday for Yankees
Masahiro Tanaka will start the opening game of the American League Championship Series Friday for the Yankees against the Astros, the team announced Thursday on its official Twitter feed.
Tanaka, who pitched seven shutout innings in Game 3 of the AL Division Series against the Indians, will face Astros left-hander Dallas Keuchel in a rematch of the 2015 AL wild-card game, which the Astros won, 3-0. First pitch is scheduled for 8:08 p.m..
In choosing Tanaka, manager Joe Girardi bypassed Sonny Gray, the losing pitcher in Game 1 of the ALDS. Gray went 3⅓ innings and allowed three runs in the Yankees’ 4-0 loss.
The team also announced that Luis Severino will start Game 2 vs. Justin Verlander and CC Sabathia will start Monday in Game 3 at Yankee Stadium against a pitcher to be named. Gray will start Game 4 for the Yankees.
Gary Cederstrom will be the umpire crew chief for the ALCS and Mike Winters will handle the duties for the National League Championship Series. The ALCS begins Friday night when the New York Yankees visit the Houston Astros, and the NLCS starts Saturday at Dodger Stadium when Los Angeles plays host to Washington or the Chicago Cubs.
Joining Cederstrom on the ALCS crew will be Mark Carlson, Chad Fairchild, Chris Guccione, Jerry Meals, Jim Reynolds and Hunter Wendelstedt. The NLCS crew includes Lance Barksdale, Eric Cooper, Alfonso Marquez, Todd Tichenor, Bill Welke and Jim Wolf. Carlson and Cooper will be the replay officials for the first two games in their series. After that, Fairchild and Barksdale will move from the field to the replay center. MLB umpire Mike Muchlinski will be the replay assistant through both series.
A sports agent and a baseball trainer are seeking lenient prison sentences after their convictions in Miami of smuggling Cuban players to the U.S. Court records filed this week show agent Bartolo Hernandez is asking for a three-year prison term and trainer Julio Estrada wants no more than five years. They were convicted by a jury in March after a six-week trial. Prosecutors are asking a judge to exceed the nineyear maximum for both calculated under federal sentencing guidelines. Sentencing is set for Nov. 2.