ALCS Preview: Red Sox and Astros

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Hey. So, I apologize for not being on top of my shit on here since I have such dedicated readers. Thank you to everyone who actually reads these. Much appreciated. Anyways, in a series that didn’t seem like a Divisional Series, the Yankees fell to baseball’s best team in the regular season, the Boston Red Sox. Every time both teams square off, the games mean just a little more than any other team in any other series and it did not disappoint. Chris Sale was awesome, David Price still can’t figure it out in the playoffs as a starter, Brock Holt hit for the cycle in game 3, Mookie Betts is real. and Aaron Judge seemed to be the only Yankee hitter to actually show up to play. It all came crashing down for the Yankees. The Rays would have handled the Red Sox in ways the Red Sox never knew were possible. Unfortunately, we will have to wait for next season for that.

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So with the Jankees finally gone, now it is the Red Sox and Astros holding it down for the American League. This series could easily be the World Series as both teams have the roster and results to put them respectively at the top of both leagues. Unfortunately, baseball does not work like that. There are two leagues. Weird right?

The Red Sox held baseball’s best record by years end coming in at 108-54 and never looking back the whole year. Led by two MVP candidates, J.D. Martinez and Mookie Betts, they have been a force to reckon with on the offensive side. Leading all of baseball in runs scored, hits, total bases, doubles, average, on base percentage, and OPS, it is not a surprise to see them where they are at. Along with Martinez and Betts, short stop Xander Bogaerts had a fantastic season himself slashing .288/.360/.522 while setting career highs in home runs with 23 and RBI’s with 103. despite playing the least amount of games since becoming a starter. Left fielder Andrew Benintendi took another step forward this season and seems to only be getting better. Brock Holt has been a great utility man playing basically every position on the field except pitcher and catcher. He also became the first player in MLB history to hit for the cycle in the Divisional Series against the Yankees.

Chris Sale might have taken home his first Cy Young award if it weren’t for a bum shoulder that cost him a few starts. But, when he was on the mound, there were few that were better. Along with Sale will come David Price. No need to talk about his Post Season resume as a starter so we will just kind of leave that be right now. Rick Porcello has been serviceable this year and will probably see game three or four depending on how the series is going. As their bullpen goes, closer Craig Kimbrel was and is his usual self this season. A surprise however was in the man of Matt Barnes. Barnes held a 3.65 ERA through 61.2 innings but struck out 96 batters, good for a 14.01 K/9 rate. Higher than Craig Kimbrel’s weak 13.86. Barnes should be used in high leverage situation for the Sox bridging the gap to Kimbrel.

Well the Astros are the Astros. As in baseball’s best team. Their pitching rotation/bullpen is unreal. The depth in both lets the manager play around with just about any match up he wants for the opposing team and is a lucky man indeed to have that luxury. Verlander, Gerrit Cole, Dallas Keuchel, Charlie Morton, and Lance McCullers. Unbelievable. It’s not fair. So just look for Verlander, Cole, Keuchel to start games 1-3 and see McCullers in the bullpen. Speaking of, Hector Rondon, Ryan Pressly, Tony Sipp, Chris Devenski, PLUS the robbery they pulled with the Blue Jays by acquiring Roberto Osuna– who has taken over the closer role– Shit is scary for opposing teams when facing Houston.

Just when you thought their pitching was their strength, you hear the names Jose Altuve, George Springer, Carlos Correa, Alex Bregman, Marwin Gonzalez, Evan Gattis, Brian McCann, and Yuli Gurriel, a lot of names, with a lot of talent. What they have built in Houston is beautiful to witness and could carry them to another World Series. Springer is a monster in the playoffs as evidenced to his seven straight games with a home run in the Post Season and setting the franchise record with 10 Post Season home runs. With Bregman playing like an MVP candidate, SPringer hitting his stride at a perfect time, Altuve and Correa healthy, it’s going to be a fun show to watch.

With the opening game of the series starting tonight October 13th, at 8:09 P.M. on TBS, everyone should be tuning into catch the opening game of the series. If not, you’re a loser. Two of baseballs best teams going head to head, and the Red Sox with home field advantage, This first game is huge for Houston to take and go up 1-0 on the road. If the Sox win, trouble could be brewing for the reigning World Series champs. All in all, this series will be exciting to watch.

JD Sig

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