LEADING OFF: Day off in playoffs, Nats-Dodgers travel to DC

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Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts, second from left, celebrates with Chase Utley after the team’s 6-5 win over the Washington Nationals during Game 4 of a baseball National League Division Series in Los Angeles, Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2016. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

The Associated Press

Baseball takes a day off during the playoffs. A pair of Game 5s were scheduled in the AL Division Series — but the Blue Jays and Indians have already clinched, so they get extra time to rest. They meet in Game 1 of the AL Championship Series on Friday night in Cleveland.

The Dodgers and Nationals get a day off for travel before the deciding Game 5 of their NL Division Series on Thursday in Washington. "Biggest start of my life. I’m not going to shy away from it," said 20-game winner Max Scherzer, set to pitch for the Nationals. "The effort from both sides over the first four games has been incredible. Great pitching, great hitting, defense, everything." Not to mention pain, too: There have been 11 hit batters in the series, a postseason record.

The Nationals will see if Stephen Strasburg is feeling any better after the ace felt discomfort in his right elbow earlier this week. Strasburg’s bullpen session at Dodger Stadium was cut short Monday. He has been out since tearing a tendon in his elbow on Sept. 7. Strasburg has said he would try to pitch again this season if Washington reaches the NL Championship Series.

Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia is recovering from arthroscopic surgery on his troublesome right knee. The team said it was "a routine cleanup" and that they lefty is expected to be ready for spring training. … Royals pitcher Chris Young had surgery to his abdominal area, pelvis and groin this week. The club said the veteran right-hander should be OK for camp. … Angels outfielder Kole Calhoun is having surgery on a bilateral core muscle injury. He will need at least six weeks of recovery time, but he is expected to head into spring training with no limitations.

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