SCOREBOARD
Thursday, Oct. 18
Boston at Cleveland (8:21 p.m. EDT). C.C. Sabathia tries to pitch the Indians into their first World Series since 1997, facing Game 1 winner Josh Beckett.

NOTHING NEW FOR BECKETT
Down 3-1 in the ALCS, Josh Beckett and Boston will try to save their season when they face Cleveland on Thursday night. The predicament is nothing new for Beckett, who started Florida's comeback from a 3-1 deficit in the 2003 NLCS with a two-hit shutout against the Chicago Cubs in Game 5.

CHANCE AT REDEMPTION
C.C. Sabathia wasn't at his best in Cleveland's 10-3 loss to Boston in Game 1 of the ALCS, giving up eight runs, seven hits and five walks in just 4 1-3 innings. Luckily for the Indians ace, his teammates have won three straight and will send him to the mound on Thursday with a chance to clinch a trip to the World Series.

NOT WORRIED
With a record eight days off, Colorado has plenty of time to get ready for their first World Series. Last year, Detroit had six days' rest, then played poorly in losing the Series in five games to St. Louis. Manager Clint Hurdle noted on Wednesday that seven of the 10 teams that had to wait five days or more before the Series actually won it all.

SPEAKING
``I don't even know if it's sunk in yet. It may take a little while longer. But I don't want to pinch myself. I don't want to wake up. It's a magical ride and I want to stay on it as long as possible.'' - Colorado first baseman Todd Helton, on the Rockies' unpredictable run to the World Series.

SEASONS
Oct. 18
1910 - The Philadelphia Athletics pounded the Chicago Cubs 9-3 for a 2-0 lead in the World Series. Eddie Collins had three hits, including two doubles, and two stolen bases.
1950 - Connie Mack, at age 87, retired as manager of the Philadelphia Athletics after 50 years, and Jimmy Dykes was named to replace him. Mack, together with Ben Shibe, founded the Athletics in 1901.
1973 - The Mets' Jerry Koosman and Tug McGraw combined to three-hit the Oakland A's and take a 3-2 lead in the World Series.
1977 - Reggie Jackson hit three consecutive home runs to lead New York to an 8-4 victory over the Los Angles Dodgers and give the Yankees the World Series title in six games. Jackson drove in five runs, and all three shots came on the first pitch.
1999 - Orlando Hernandez pitched shutout ball into the eighth inning and Derek Jeter hit a two-run homer as the New York Yankees won their record 36th pennant, beating the Boston Red Sox 6-1 in Game 5 of the AL championship series.
Today's birthdays: Alex Cora 32; Doug Mirabelli 37.

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