Four starting aces—Kershaw, Verlander, Sale, Chacin—top players in Friday's league division playoff games

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Four starting pitching aces are Box-Toppers Players of the Games in Friday’s four league division series playoff games:

  • Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw is top player in Friday’s 3-0 win over the Braves.

  • Astros pitcher Justin Verlander is top player in Friday’s 7-2 win over the Indians.

  • Red Sox pitcher Chris Sale is top player in Friday’s 5-4 win over the Yankees.

  • And Brewers pitcher Jhoulys Chacin is top player in Friday’s 4-0 win over the Rockies.

NLDS Game 2: Dodgers 3, Braves 0

Kershaw pitched eight scoreless innings, allowing two hits, no walks and striking out three.

Kershaw had 8.0 Box-Toppers points in 2018, 73rd among all players, 34th among NL pitchers. He leads active players in career Box-Toppers points with 214.8, third-most since 1995, when Box-Toppers tracking began.

Kershaw had the highest Box-Toppers game score (+9.0) among the four who earned Player of the Game honors Friday.

Manny Machado had the highest Box-Toppers game score (0.0) among Dodgers batters (HR 1-4 R 2BI).

The Dodgers now lead the best-of-five games series, 2-0, which resumes Sunday in Atlanta.

ALDS Game 1: Astros 7, Indians 2

Verlander struck out seven over 5 1/3 innings, allowing two runs, two hits and two walks.

Verlander had the top Box-Toppers game score among all Astros players of +4.1. Alex Bregman had the highest Box-Toppers game score among Astros batters of +2.0 (HR 2-3 R 2BI).

Verlander had 24.1 Box-Toppers points in 2018, third among all players, second among AL pitchers. He was matched up against the next-highest ranking player Friday, Indians pitcher Corey Kluber (21.7 Box-Toppers points, ranked fourth). Kluber didn’t fare as well (4.2IP 6H 4R 2BB 2K L), with a Box-Toppers game score of -9.8.

ALDS Game 1: Red Sox 5, Yankees 4

Sale struck out eight over 5 1/3 innings, allowing two runs, five hits and two walks.

Sale had 20.1 Box-Toppers points in 2018, sixth among all players, fourth among AL pitchers.

Sale had a Box-Toppers game score Friday of +2.1, most among Red Sox players, just ahead of the +2.0 score by designated hitter J.D. Martinez (HR 2-4 R 3BI).

NLDS Game 2: Brewers 1, Rockies 0

Chacin pitched five scoreless innings, allowing three hits, three walks and striking out three.

Chacin had 13.7 Box-Toppers points in 2018, 20th among all players, ninth among NL pitchers.

Chacin had a Box-Toppers game score Friday of +2.0. Top Brewers batter in the game was pinch runner-shortstop Orlando Arcia, who had a game score of +1.0 (0-0 R 0BI). Rockies starter Tyler Anderson had a higher Box-Toppers game score of +3.0 in the loss (6IP 4H R 2BB 5K L).

The Brewers now lead the best-of-five games series, 2-0, which resumes Sunday in Denver.

Top player from each game

Listed from highest to lowest Box-Toppers game score (BTG)

BTG Game Player AB R H BI IP H R ER BB K
+9.0 LAD 3, ATL 0 Clayton Kershaw (W, 1‑0) 8.0 2 0 0 0 3
+4.1 HOU 7, CLE 2 Justin Verlander (W, 1‑0) 5.1 2 2 2 2 7
+2.1 BOS 5, NYY 4 Chris Sale (W, 1‑0) 5.1 5 2 2 2 8
+2.0 MIL 4, COL 0 Jhoulys Chacin (W, 1‑0) 5.0 3 0 0 3 3
` Pitcher had a no-decision in the game and did not pick up a win or a save.

Coming Saturday: The American League Division Series playoffs resume with two Game 2s:

ALDS Game 2: Astros lead Indians, 1-0

The pitching matchup Saturday:

Indians—Carlos Carrasco, 19.1 Box-Toppers points, seventh among all players, fifth among AL pitchers.

Astros—Gerrit Cole, 18.0 Box-Toppers points, eighth among all players, sixth among AL pitchers.

See the season Box-Toppers point totals of all Indians and Astros players who earned Player of the Game honors in 2018.

ALDS Game 2: Red Sox lead Yankees, 1-0

The pitching matchup Saturday:

Yankees—Masahiro Tanaka, 13.4 Box-Toppers points, 23rd among all players, 15th among AL pitchers.

Red Sox—David Price, 14.4 Box-Toppers points, 18th among all players, 12th among AL pitchers.

See the season Box-Toppers point totals of all Yankees and Red Sox players who earned Player of the Game honors in 2018.

About Box-Toppers—Box-Toppers tracks who most helps their team win the most games. Using standard box score statistics, Box-Toppers uses a simple formula to determine a Player of the Game for each Major League Baseball game played. That player is the person who contributed most to his team’s win. In regular season games, players earn 1.0 Box-Toppers point for being named Player of the Game and can earn bonus points for being Player of the Day or top player or batter in their league for the day.

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