ALCS GAME 2 POST-MORTEM
Astros 2, Yankees 1
Even though the Astros lost the 2004 NLCS, Game 5 was one of those games I was going to sock away forever in my memory. The pitchers’ duel. The defense. The homer. I still derive a lot of pleasure (NTTAWWT) from watching the homer, even with the hindsight of knowing what the next two games had in store.
Today’s game was one of those games. Verlander was a monster on the mound, turning in a truly epic performance. There was some more sparkling defense to save at least one run, perhaps more. For the second time this postseason, the Astros scratched out the winning run against one of the best closers in the game. And the Yankees couldn’t do something that the Astros had done more than once against them this year: cut down a crucial run at the plate.
And, as someone who moonlights as an audio engineer, it brings joy to my heart to hear the roar of the crowd cause Fox’s stadium mics to start clipping. Fort Minute Maid is alive and well.
ALCS GAME 3 – HOU leads 2-0
Monday, October 16, 7:08pm CDT – Yankee Stadium
Charlie Morton (0-0, 4.15) vs. CC Sabathia (0-0, 3.72)
Morton gets the call for his second postseason start after giving up two runs in 4.1 innings in Game 4 of the ALDS. Boston knocked him around a bit for seven hits on top of two walks. Morton only faced the Yankees once this season, and was the winning pitcher in the 10-7 Jeter worship service in May; he allowed four runs in 5.2 innings while fanning 10. That was only his second career appearance against the Yankees and his only start in the Bronx.
Sabathia has made two solid starts this postseason despite his record having nothing to show for it. He was the starter of the fateful ALDS Game 2 that the Yankees let get away from them; he left the game with one out in the 6th and a man on, who eventually scored on Lindor’s salami. In Game 5 he dominated for four-plus innings, striking out nine of his first 14 batters before four straight Indians reached base and chased him from the game.
The Astros did not see Sabathia this year, but in 2016 he picked up a win against them while allowing two runs in 6.2 innings. For his career he is 2-1 with a 4.05 ERA against Houston.
Select pitcher/batter matchups:
Castro vs. Morton: 30 AB, .400/.400/.733
Frazier vs Morton: 18 AB, .389/.421/.944
Headley vs. Morton: 9 AB, .333/.500/.333
Holliday vs. Morton: 34 AB, .265/.286/.471
Gregorius vs. Morton: 6 AB, .167/.375/.167
Altuve vs. Sabathia: 6 AB, .333/.333/.333
Beltran vs. Sabathia: 35 AB, .229/.341/.333
McCann vs. Sabathia: 10 AB, .200/.250/.400
Reddick vs. Sabathia: 19 AB, .105/.150/.316