For the first ever time, the American League pennant has landed in Houston. Last night, the hometown Astros capped off a remarkable Championship Series against the New York Yankees, winning 4-0 in front of over 43,000 adoring fans. Now they’re headed to Los Angeles for their second Word Series appearance in franchise history, and first since 2005.
You may have noticed a popular word in postseason baseball: Momentum. The Astros had it in the ALDS, taking a quick 2-0 lead over the Red Sox before dispatching Boston in four games. The Dodgers have it, as they aim to sweep the Cubs out of the playoffs tonight. Right now, the Yankees have it, too.
The Astros did what they were supposed to do. Now, the Yankees try to fight back.
Starting tonight, Houston and New York do battle in the Bronx, with a trip to the World Series on the line. Staked to a 2-0 series lead, Houston needs only win two of the next five games to advance—but don’t count the Yankees out just yet. They claimed the winner-take-all Wild Card game from Minnesota and rallied from a 0-2 deficit to dispatch the Cleveland Indians in the American League Division Series last week.
The Houston Astros dodged one bullet. Now, they’ll have to contend with another.
When the New York Yankees defeated the favored Cleveland Indians in the fifth game of the American League Division Series, they established themselves as a powerhouse team. On one hand, Houston is lucky to avoid Cleveland, who dismantled the Astros in five of six 2017 meetings. On the other hand, the Yankees are really good, and their young team will only get better with time. This series could mark the beginning of a bitter new rivalry.
This was October baseball at its best.
The Astros and Red Sox traded barbs over nine pulse-quickening innings at Fenway Park this afternoon. In the end, it was the Astros who emerged victorious in the see-saw affair. Their win sealed the American League Division Series in Houston’s favor and eliminated the Red Sox from the 2017 postseason.