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American League Championship Series Game 5: Indians vs. Blue Jays, Wednesday 10/19, 3 p.m. CT

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The Jays once again try to stave off elimination.

Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports

You all know what’s at stake here. If the Indians win this afternoon, they go to the World Series.

If the Blue Jays win, the series heads back to Cleveland for Game 6 on Friday.

The Jays go with Game 1 starter Marco Estrada, who threw a complete game, allowing two runs on six hits. Unfortunately, you can’t win if your team doesn’t score, something we are all quite familiar with this week.

Since the Indians used Game 1 starter Corey Kluber in Game 4, the Jays won’t have to see him again until Game 7. The Tribe’s pitching staff is so banged up they are going to start Ryan Merritt. If you hadn’t heard of him before now, neither had I. Merritt, who posted mediocre numbers (4.21 ERA, 1.249 WHIP) in Triple-A this year, has made four big-league appearances, which included just one start, and that was made September 30, after the Indians had clinched their division title. It’s also the last time he pitched in any game.

That would seem to put this one in Toronto’s favor.

Today’s game is on TBS at 3 p.m. CT. Announcers: Ernie Johnson (play-by-play), Ron Darling & Cal Ripken, Jr. (analysts) with Sam Ryan (reporter).

MLB.com Gameday

Baseball-reference.com game preview

SB Nation game preview

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Discuss amongst yourselves.