Astros Beat Yankees in Thrilling Series to Advance to the World Series
In an exhilarating seven-game series, the Houston Astros beat the New York Yankees to advance to the World Series. The series was a back-and-forth affair which had me on the edge of my seat for all seven games.
In game one, the Astros were guided to victory thanks to a great performance from Dallas Keuchel, who went 7 scoreless innings, while striking out 10 batters. The Astros only allowed one run, a solo homer from Greg Bird in the ninth off of Ken Giles. The Yankees had Masahiro Tanaka on the bump, and he turned in a very solid performance. He went 6 innings while striking out three, but he did allow two runs. The two runs both came in the fourth inning on RBI singles from Carlos Correa and Yuli Gurriel.
In game two, Justin Verlander took the hill and absolutely dominated the powerful Yankee lineup. Verlander looked like an ace from the early days of baseball, when pitch counts didn’t matter and pitchers regularly threw complete games. Verlander threw a complete game, while only allowing one run, and striking out 13 batters. He allowed one run on a ground-rule double from Todd Frazier. The Astros scored two runs for the second night in a row, and Carlos Correa provided all of the offense. Correa scored the first run of the game on a solo shot off of Luis Severino in the fourth. The Yankees tied the game in the fifth, and the game would remain tied until the bottom of the ninth, when Carlos Correa hit a walk-off RBI double to beat the Yankees 2-1.
Game three saw the series shift to New York, where the Yankees had not lost in the postseason. They continued to win at Yankee Stadium, and this time they won behind their stopper, CC Sabathia. He went 6 shutout innings while striking out five batters. His record in starts the day after a Yankee loss improved to 10-0, and his offense backed him up. The Yankees scored 8 runs, six of which came on home runs. Todd Frazier poked a three-run shot into the right field bleachers in the second inning, and Aaron Judge smashed a three-run shot to left in the fourth inning. The Astros scored only one run, when Alex Bregman was walked across the plate in the ninth inning. The Yankees won 8-1.
Game four was a start between the Yankees’ Sonny Gray and the Astros’ Lance McCullers. Gray lasted five innings while only allowing one run and striking out four, and McCullers went six innings while also only allowing one run. The Astros scored three runs in the sixth inning on a double from Yuli Gurriel, and then one more run in the seventh on an error by Starlin Castro. The Yankees were down 4-0, but then Aaron Judge hit a mammoth homer to center field to kickstart the offense, which would go on to score five runs after the homer, and take game four with a score of 6-4.
The series was evened up by the Yankees at 2-2, and were looking to continue their momentum, and to put a beatdown on Dallas Keuchel, one of the Astros’ two aces. Dallas Keuchel ran into trouble against the Yankees this time around, and only lasted 4.2 innings, allowing four earned runs, while striking out 8. The Yankees scored all of their runs against Keuchel on four RBI singles. They then scored an additional run in the 7th inning, a solo shot from Gary Sanchez off of Brad Peacock. The Yankees’ starter, Masahiro Tanaka pitched an absolute gem for seven shutout innings, and struck out eight batters while only allowing three hits. The Yankees took game five with a score of 5-0.
The Yankees looked to close out the Astros in game six and advance to the World Series, but they had to beat Justin Verlander to do it, and that is a task that is looking nearly impossible this postseason. Verlander dominated the Yankees again, tossing seven shutout innings, while striking out eight batters and only allowing five hits. The Astros offense backed up his strong performance by knocking Yankees starter, Luis Severino, out of the game after 4.2 innings. He allowed three runs, which came on a Brian McCann ground-rule double and a Jose Altuve single. The Yankees would only score one run in game six, a solo shot from Aaron Judge in the eighth, but the run was nullified by a solo shot from Jose Altuve in the bottom half of the same inning. The Astros would score three more runs after the solo shot from Altuve to win the game with a final score of 7-1.
GAME. SEVEN. The two sweetest words the sports world has to offer. A winner-take-all game between the Yankees and Astros. The Astros would send Charlie Morton to the mound to face off against CC Sabathia. Sabathia did not look sharp for the first time this postseason, which spelled doom for the Yankees, as their stopped allowed five hits and a run in only 3.1 innings. The run came on an Evan Gattis solo shot to left center. In the next inning, Jose Altuve continued to rake at the plate, smashing a solo shot to right. Later in the fifth, Brian McCann would plate two more runs on a double. Charlie Morton shut down the powerful Yankee lineup, tossing five shutout innings while striking out five. He was replaced in the sixth inning by Lance McCullers, who was absolutely dominant, tossing four shutout innings in relief while striking out six Yankees. The Astros won game seven with a score of 4-0, and advanced to their first world series since 2005.
The World Series begins on Tuesday, October 24 at 5:09 p.m. on FOX. The Houston Astros and Los Angeles Dodgers will face off in LA for game one.