Gerrit Cole, Yankees take down Guardians in Game 1 of ALDS

NEW YORK — Gerrit Cole pitched effectively into the seventh inning, Anthony Rizzo hit a two-run homer and the New York Yankees opened the American League Division Series (ALDS) with a 4-1 victory over the Cleveland Guardians on Tuesday night.

Game 2 is Thursday in New York, where Cleveland’s Shane Bieber will oppose Nestor Cortes.

In his fifth postseason start as a Yankee and first at Yankee Stadium since signing with New York after the 2019 season, Cole allowed one run and four hits in 6 1/3 innings. Cole struck out eight and walked one after not getting out of the third inning in last season’s wild-card game at Boston.

Cole (1-0) improved to 3-1 in the postseason as a Yankee and exited to a standing ovation from the crowd after allowing a single to Myles Straw.

Harrison Bader hit a game-tying solo homer in his postseason debut with his hometown team, as the Yankees won their sixth straight postseason game over Cleveland. Jose Trevino hit a tiebreaking sacrifice fly before Rizzo went deep.

Steven Kwan homered for Cleveland, which has scored four runs through its first three postseason games.

Cleveland’s Cal Quantrill (0-1) allowed four runs (three earned) and four hits in five-plus innings. He struck out five and walked three after winning his final 11 regular-season decisions.

Jonathan Loaisiga ended the seventh by getting Amed Rosario to ground into a double play. Wandy Peralta pitched a scoreless eighth after Loaisiga opened the inning by allowing a single to Jose Ramirez.

Peralta got the first out of the ninth before Clay Holmes recorded the final two outs.

Cleveland went ahead with one out in the third when Kwan hit a 2-0 fastball into the right-field seats. Cole left the bases loaded by striking out Andres Gimenez.

New York tied the game in the bottom half when Bader blasted a full-count sinker into the left-field stands and went ahead in the fifth after Josh Donaldson was called out trying to stretch a single to open the inning.

Donaldson hit a fly ball that appeared to bounce off the top of the right-field wall, and he thought it was gone. Instead, he was easily thrown out after rounding first.

After Donaldson’s miscue, Isiah Kiner-Falefa singled and his ball went under right fielder Oscar Gonzalez’s legs, allowing the shortstop to reach third. Kiner-Falefa then gave the Yankees a 2-1 lead when he scored on Trevino’s fly ball.

New York added two more in the sixth to knock out Quantrill when Rizzo blasted a full-count offering into the second deck in right. — Reuters