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Trevor Bauer Exits in 1st Inning of ALCS Game 3 Because of Bloody Finger Injury

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistOctober 18, 2016

TORONTO, ON - OCTOBER 17:  Trevor Bauer #47 of the Cleveland Indians throws a pitch in the first inning against the Toronto Blue Jays during game three of the American League Championship Series at Rogers Centre on October 17, 2016 in Toronto, Canada.  (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)
Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images

Cleveland Indians pitcher Trevor Bauer lasted just 0.2 innings in Game 3 of the American League Championship Series before his right pinkie laceration forced him to exit, according to MLB.com's Richard Justice.

Dan Otero replaced Bauer in the first inning.

It's not as if Bauer's failure to get out of the first inning was a major surprise. He suffered the cut Friday, which didn't leave a lot of time for the pinkie to heal before he took the mound Monday night.

Indians manager Terry Francona was prepared for the 25-year-old to make a hasty departure. According to ESPN's Buster Olney, Corey Kluber will likely start Game 4 instead of Game 5, which would've been the strategy if Bauer had pitched well into Game 3.

The bigger question is whether Bauer's injury will jeopardize his ability to pitch for the rest of the series. If he's unavailable, Cleveland would have to rely on Kluber, Josh Tomlin, Ryan Merritt and potentially Mike Clevinger. Bauer's injury also placed more pressure on the bullpen, which has already put in its fair share of work in the ALCS.

Francona and Co. have done an excellent job compensating for injuries to starters Carlos Carrasco and Danny Salazar, but the manager may need to get even more creative while working around Bauer's pinkie troubles.

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