ALCS Game 1: Masahiro Tanaka to start for New York Yankees vs

The Yankees are built for the future thanks to young stars like Aaron Judge and Gary Sanchez

The Yankees are built for the future thanks to young stars like Aaron Judge and Gary Sanchez

Through the regular season, the teams had almost identical run differentials, with NY checking in with +198 and Houston with +196.

Second baseman Altuve was singled out, and Girardi recognised him as a force.

Bellinger, the likely NL Rookie of the Year, had 39 regular-season homers but was one-for-12 in the series before his opposite-field homer made it 2-0 in the fifth inning. All in all, the Astros' top pitchers look to fare better against the Yankees than the other way around, which looks to be very important in terms of keeping the aggressive bullpen use by the managers to turning into overuse as the postseason wears on. Surely, the Astros were taking notes.

"The Yankees pitching isn't mediocre, but this team that they are facing now is even more powerful and potent than Cleveland".

"Oh, he's a great player, and he's been for a number of years here", Girardi said. The then National League Astros won the World Series that season. Both teams are capable of producing big and sudden run totals. The last time the Astros made it to a championship series was back in 2005, and that was before their 2013 switch over to the American League. While the Yanks were embarking on their improbable comeback against the Indians, the Astros were at home eating popcorn. Now, we barely blink as Chris Sale and Jon Lester are used in relief.

When ALDS hero Didi Gregorius was hurt to start the season, they thrived.

He built off that in his first start this postseason when he yielded three hits and a run in 5 2/3 innings to help Houston to an 8-2 win over the Red Sox in Game 2 of the ALDS.

Poland's Magda Linette out of Tianjin Open
Sharapova was broken in the first game but fought back to draw level before going on to take the first set with a hold to love. The Czech coughed up eight double faults as she lost 6-4 5-7 6-4 to world number 113 Zhu Lin of China.

But Keuchel has pitched better than most against the Yankees in recent years, going 4-2 with a 1.41 ERA and 45 strikeouts in six regular-season starts. "You keep fighting, try to make adjustments ... it's all you can really do". When the dust had settled on the series, Kluber had a 12.79 ERA, while offensive stars Francisco Lindor and Jose Ramirez were 2-for-18 and 2-for-20, respectively, just as exactly no one projected.

"When you think about the way he's been pitching lately, you think about him having the possibility of making two starts in a series. Good luck, I guess". In particular, it will bear watching how a Yankees bullpen loaded with hard-throwing relievers fares against an Astros offense that mashed heaters to the tune of.301/.373/.525 during the regular season.

By virtue of his home run hat trick, Altuve became the ninth player in MLB history to smack a trio of jacks in a postseason game, according to MLB.com's Brian McTaggart.

Houston seems to have the upper hand entering Game 1 with Dallas Keuchel leading the charge on the mound. Yankees hitters are 19-for-103 (.184) with four walks and 35 strikeouts against him. "But when I was behind the scenes and got to see these young guys play, perform and the way (Aaron) Judge came out this year, it's no surprise they're in the position they're in". But when you you look at the fact that the Yankees scored 5.9 runs per game on average against 6.1 for the Astros and you see that we're going to have to dig deeper than their season records.

CLEVELAND, OH - OCTOBER 11: Corey Kluber #28 of the Cleveland Indians leaves the game in the fourth inning against the New York Yankees in Game Five of the American League Divisional Series at Progressive Field on October 11, 2017 in Cleveland, Ohio. But that could also mean that they're ripe for a Game 1 letdown. He got a win as a starter and one in relief against Boston, giving up three runs in 8 2/3 innings.

The Los Angeles Dodgers and Houston Astros punched their tickets to the next round of the Major League Baseball playoffs on Monday as the Dodgers swept Arizona and the Astros eliminated Boston in four games. This isn't the time to start betting against them.

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