Cleveland Indians: A Position-by-Position Breakdown of the ALCS

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Oct 10, 2016; Boston, MA, USA; Cleveland Indians teammates celebrate after defeating the Boston Red Sox 4-3 in game three of the 2016 ALDS playoff baseball series at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 10, 2016; Boston, MA, USA; Cleveland Indians teammates celebrate after defeating the Boston Red Sox 4-3 in game three of the 2016 ALDS playoff baseball series at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports /
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Designated Hitter

Oct 4, 2016; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Blue Jays first baseman Edwin Encarnacion (10) reacts after hitting a walk off three run home run against Baltimore Orioles in the 11th inning to give the Jays a 5-2 win in the American League wild card playoff baseball game at Rogers Centre. Mandatory Credit: Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 4, 2016; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Blue Jays first baseman Edwin Encarnacion (10) reacts after hitting a walk off three run home run against Baltimore Orioles in the 11th inning to give the Jays a 5-2 win in the American League wild card playoff baseball game at Rogers Centre. Mandatory Credit: Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports /

Indians: Carlos Santana

Blue Jays: Edwin Encarnacion

No matter how the Blue Jays’ season ends, Edwin Encarnacion has already had the kind of postseason young children dream of when they’re growing up playing the game. First he opened it up by hitting a walk-off three run home run in the wild card game, and he hasn’t stopped hitting since then.  Encarnacion is currently batting .375 with three home runs and 7 RBIs, which are both tops of any batter in the postseason thus far.

Encarnacion is a free agent at postseason’s end, and after a regular season in which he hit 42 longballs and drove in an AL-best 127 runs, Toronto will have to break out the checkbook in a big way to retain his services.

Cleveland counters with a power bat of its own in Carlos Santana. Santana only has two hits so far this postseason, but he’s coming off of a productive year in which he hit a career-high 34 home runs.

Santana was the hottest hitter in the Tribe’s lineup during the final month of the regular season, slashing .327/.454/.625 with nine doubles, six homers, and 21 RBIs in the last 29 games, and has traditionally hit very well against the Blue Jays, sporting a career 134 OPS+.

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