Indians vs Blue Jays ALCS Preview & Free Pick – Game 3

Cleveland (2-0) at Toronto (0-2)
When: Monday, October 17th 2016
Where: Rogers Centre, Toronto, Ontario
Time: 8:05 ET | TV: TBS

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The Cleveland Indians will look to take a commanding ALCS lead on the Toronto Blue Jays when the teams switch venues for Game 3 on Monday night. The Indians pitching led by reliever Andrew Miller, slowed down a hot Toronto offense in the first two games in Cleveland, holding them to just one run. Miller was the star of the Indians’ AL Division Series sweep of Boston as well, recording seven strikeouts in four scoreless innings and was even better in the first two games of the ALCS. He struck out 10 batters and allowed just one hit in 3.2 scoreless innings of relief as Cleveland seized control and took a 2-0 lead in the best-of-seven series. The Indians offense hasn’t been great either, squeezing out two runs in each of the first two contests. Indians SS Francisco Lindor has driven in three of his team’s four runs in the series. Toronto 3B Josh Donaldson set a franchise record with his sixth postseason double on Saturday and is 12-for-26 in the playoffs. Trevor Bauer will face Marcus Stroman in Game 3 on Monday.

Pitchers: Indians – Trevor Bauer (0-0, 5.79 ERA) | Blue Jays – Marcus Stroman (0-0, 3.00)

Bauer was not his best in the ALDS, but Miller came on for him in the fifth inning to pick up the victory. Bauer allowed six hits and three runs in 4.2 innings against Boston. Bauer was scheduled to start Game 2 against Toronto before cutting his finger while repairing his drone and was pushed back to allow the pinky on his pitching hand to heal. He had one of his best starts against Toronto on August 19th, when he allowed two runs in eight innings and struck out a career-high 13.

Stroman is still looking for his first win since August 14th, but was solid in his ALDS start against Baltimore, holding them to two runs and four hits over six innings. He has allowed three or fewer runs in seven of his last nine starts but could not get enough support from the offense to land in the win column. The first of those nine starts came at Cleveland on August 21st, when Stroman struck out nine and allowed one run in 7.1 innings but took a no-decision.

Neither offense is showing anything right now as the pitching is dominating. The fact that Toronto is almost a 2/1 favorite in this game is ridiculous. Bauer is not that bad and Stroman is not that good. I’m playing line value here in this one. Take the Indians – they have the momentum.

Pick: Indians +170

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