Today’s Game 1: New York (Sabathia 15-6, 3.38 ERA) at Baltimore (Hammel 8-6, 3.43 ERA), 3:07 p.m. ( TV: TBS)
Matchup: First playoff meeting between these A.L. East foes since 1996, when the Yankees won the ALCS 4-1. The series began with a famous controversy: New York won in extra innings at home after 12-year-old Jeffrey Maier reached over the right-field wall to interfere with a ball hit by Derek Jeter, who was credited with a disputed, game-tying HR.
Yankees’ big picture: Went 19-8 down the stretch, finished two games ahead of Baltimore for their 13th division crown in 17 years and earned home-field advantage throughout the A.L. playoffs. Now the Yankees (95-67) try to win their 28th World Series championship.
Orioles’ big picture: First playoff appearance since 1997. Baltimore (93-69) had 14 consecutive losing seasons and four straight last-place finishes before turning it around under Buck Showalter, now in his second full season. The Orioles went 29-9 in one-run games and have won amazing 16 straight in extra innings. Orioles are 23-8 when he homers.