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Tuesday September 18th, 2018 1:56PM

LEADING OFF: Severino vs Kluber; Max to the rescue for Nats

By The Associated Press
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A look at what's happening around the majors Thursday:

PAIR OF ACES

Two of the top pitchers in the American League square off when the New York Yankees begin a series in Cleveland. Two-time Cy Young Award winner Corey Kluber (12-4, 2.49 ERA) starts for the Indians, while the AL leader in wins, Luis Severino (14-2, 2.12) takes the mound for New York in a matchup of 2018 All-Stars. The appearance will be Severino's first against Cleveland since last season's playoffs when he allowed three runs in seven innings of work and helped the Yankees force a decisive Game 5 in the AL Division Series with a 7-3 victory in Game 4.

SNELL'S SNUB

Tampa Bay Rays pitcher Blake Snell (12-4) is second in the AL in ERA (2.09) and has 132 strikeouts in 116 innings this season. The 25-year-old lefty will make his first start since being left off the All-Star team Sunday when he takes the mound at Minnesota.

MAX TO THE RESCUE

The Nationals fell back to .500 with a 2-0 loss to Pittsburgh on Wednesday, the 11th loss in their last 16 games. Washington will try to reclaim a winning record when it begins a four-game series in New York against the Mets. Fortunately for the struggling Nationals, they'll open with three-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (11-5, 2.33 ERA) on the mound, while the Mets counter with left-hander Steven Matz (4-6, 3.31).

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