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.
If Game One of the American League Division Series was anything to go by, Jose Altuve is feeling good this October. Good luck, opposing pitchers.
The frontrunner for the American League MVP Award turned in a performance worthy of that designation on Thursday, smacking three solo home runs en route to an 8-2 Astros victory over Boston. In so doing, he became just the ninth player in baseball history to homer three times in a postseason contest, joining names like Babe Ruth, Reggie Jackson, and George Brett.
The Houston Astros wrapped up their dominant 2017 season by claiming three wins in a four-game series against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park last weekend.
Their next opponent? Those same Red Sox, who travel to Houston to begin the best-of-five American League Division Series on Thursday.
Fenway Park will be rocking this weekend as the Astros tangle with the Boston Red Sox in a pivotal four-game series to close out the regular season.
Adding to the intrigue is the fact that both teams are ticketed for the postseason—and may in fact face one another in the first round of the playoffs, pending Houston’s ability to pass the Cleveland Indians in the standings and take the #1 overall seed. The Astros are currently one game behind Cleveland with four left to play. Unless they close that gap over the weekend and finish with a better overall record, they’ll take the #2 seed and face the Red Sox in round one. So tonight’s game may very well be the first of nine consecutive matchups between the two powerhouse teams.
With seven games to go in the regular season and the AL West Division long since cinched up, you might think that the Houston Astros have little to play for these days.
You’d be mistaken.
The Astros are still hot in pursuit of the Cleveland Indians for home field advantage throughout the playoffs. That honor will go to the team with the best overall record when all’s said and done. As of this writing, Houston sits 2.5 games behind Cleveland in the race to the top.
It’s hard to call a 93-win season a disappointment. Especially when there are still ten games to be played.
Even so, it’s hard for Houston fans not to be a little bummed by the current American League standings. While the Astros have played well lately, winning seven of their last nine games, the Cleveland Indians have been even better. With another victory on Thursday night, Cleveland has taken a staggering 27 of their last 28 contests. That puts them 2.5 games ahead of the Astros for the best record in the league. Keep Reading
Could it have gone any other way?
The Houston Astros clinched their division—thereby securing a place in the postseason—Sunday afternoon by defeating the Seattle Mariners by a score of 7-1. It’s the seventh division championship in Astros history, and the first since 2001. The ‘Stros last made the playoffs as a Wild Card team in 2015, losing in the ALDS to Kansas City, the eventual World Series champs. Keep Reading