Game 5 – Orioles vs. Yankees – 5 PM EST, TBS
Jason Hammel vs. C.C. Sabathia
- These teams have played each other 22 times this season. They are 11-11 in those games.
- The last three contests have all been decided by a single run and Game 1 was tied going into the ninth inning.
- The Yankees successfully ended the Oriole's streak of 16 consecutive extra-inning victories earlier in the series.
- Alex Rodriguez went 1-for-4 with two strikeouts and is 2-for-16 with nine Ks in the series. According to USA Today Sports, A-Rod is 4-for-34 in his last nine postseason games over the last two years. Multiple sources are reporting that Alex Rodriguez will most likely be benched in Game 5, with Eric Chavez getting the start at third base.
- Rodriguez is fifth in major-league history with 647 home runs
- O's closer Jim Johnson pitched a perfect 13th inning, earning the save in Game 4. He blew the save in Game 3 after giving up a home run to Raul Ibanez and was also demolished on five runs in Game 1.
- The O's are hitting .197 as a team and have scored nine runs in the ALDS.
- The Yankees are hitting .216 as a team and have scored 13 runs in the ALDS.
- According to MLB.com, the O's are 17-3 this year in extra-innings games, although this was their first such victory over the Yanks, against whom they are 1-3 this season in extra innings. And the O's are 8-0 in games of 13 or more innings in 2012.
- Hammel was Baltimore's best starter during the regular season. He gave up the loss in Game 1, tossing 5.2 innings, giving up 2 earned runs, 4 walks and 5 strikeouts.
- Sabathia won Game 1 of this series, tossing 8.2 innings, giving up 2 runs, 1 walk and 7 strikeouts.
- J.J. Hardy is 7 for 14 with four extra-base hits against Sabathia in 2012.
The winner on Friday night will face the Tigers in the ALCS.
Game 5 – Cardinals vs. Nationals – 8:30 PM EST, TBS
Adam Wainwright vs. Gio Gonzalez
- According to USA Today Sports, Mark DeRosa, who is not on the playoff roster, gave the following famous Teddy Roosevelt speech to rally the Nationals before their Game 4 win:
It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood…who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.
- Gio Gonzalez hasn't allowed a run at home in 23 innings.
- Jayson Werth, who hit the walk-off game winning homer in Game 4 Thursday, had not homered since Sept. 8.
- St. Louis is 5-0 in their last five elimination games going back to last year's World Series run.
- Adam Wainwright, who has a 1.59 ERA in the playoffs, gave up only one run over 5.2 innings in the opener of the series — only his second career post-season start.
- According to Yahoo Sports, Wainwright became the first Cardinal to strike out 10 in a playoff game since Bob Gibson in 1968.
- The Nats have been outscored 23-9 in this series.
- Nats 19-year-old All-Star Bryce Harper is 1 for 18 with 6 Ks in the series.
- D.C. hadn't hosted an MLB postseason game since 1933 prior to Wednesday.
The winner on Friday night will face the Giants in the NLCS.
Photo Credit: Mark Goldman/Icon SMI