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Mon Oct 1521:41Bregman trolls Eovaldi, Hinch says "back it up" in ALCS
HOUSTON (AP) — Alex Bregman and the Houston Astros are brimming with confidence, even after a Game 2 AL Championship Series defeat to the Boston Red Sox.For proof, just see Bregman's social media feed.Hours after Boston beat Houston 7-5 to even the best-of-seven series at a game each, Bregman shared video Monday on Instagram of the Astros hitting back-to-back-to-back home runs against Game 3 Red Sox starter Nathan Eovaldi from a game in June."Lil pregame video work," he wrote.Eovaldi will oppose Dallas Keuchel in Houston on Tuesday after Rick Porcello was used in relief during Game 2, when the Astros took their first loss of the postseason. Eovaldi's previous start against the Astros didn't go well. The right-hander allowed seven hits and four runs in a 5-1 loss June 20 while with Tampa Bay, including a season-high four homers.Three of those were hit in succession by George Springer, Bregman and Jose Altuve in the sixth inning.The Astros didn't work out Monday, so the brazen 24-year-... [More]
Sun Oct 1401:50Sale, Cora make early exits as Red Sox lose ALCS opener
BOSTON (AP) — Red Sox ace Chris Sale and manager Alex Cora both made early exits in Boston's 7-2 loss to Houston in Game 1 of AL Championship Series on Saturday night.Sale lasted just four innings, giving up two runs, one hit, four walks and a hit batter.Cora wasn't far behind the lanky left-hander going back to the clubhouse. The rookie manager was ejected in the bottom of the fifth inning with the game tied 2-2 after arguing a called third strike on Andrew Benintendi that ended Boston's first rally of the game."You can't argue balls and strikes, and I did," Cora said. "It's kind of like embarrassing that it happens in the playoffs. That wasn't cool watching the game in the clubhouse. ... But sometimes you got to do what you got to do, and you've got to defend your players."Sale opened the game with an eight-pitch walk to George Springer and struggled through the first three innings with subpar stuff and location."I just went out there and lost it for a little bit," Sale said.Housto... [More]
Sun Oct 1401:30Sale, Cora make early exits for Red Sox in ALCS Game 1
BOSTON (AP) — Red Sox ace Chris Sale and manager Alex Cora both made early exits in Boston's 7-2 loss to Houston in Game 1 of AL Championship Series on Saturday night.Sale lasted just four innings, giving up two runs, one hit, four walks and a hit batter.Cora wasn't far behind the lanky left-hander going back to the clubhouse. The rookie manager was ejected in the bottom of the fifth inning with the game tied 2-2 after arguing a called third strike on Andrew Benintendi that ended Boston's first rally of the game."You can't argue balls and strikes, and I did," Cora said. "It's kind of like embarrassing that it happens in the playoffs. That wasn't cool watching the game in the clubhouse. ... But sometimes you got to do what you got to do, and you've got to defend your players."Sale opened the game with an eight-pitch walk to George Springer and struggled through the first three innings with subpar stuff and location."I just went out there and lost it for a little bit," Sale said.Housto... [More]
Sun Oct 1400:30Sale, Cora make early exits for Red Sox in ALCS Game 1
BOSTON (AP) — Red Sox ace Chris Sale and manager Alex Cora both made early exits in Boston's 7-2 loss to the Houston Astros in Game 1 of AL Championship Series on Saturday night.Sale lasted just four innings, giving up two runs on one hit, four walks and a hit batter.Cora wasn't far behind the lanky left-hander going back to the clubhouse. The rookie manager was ejected in the bottom of the fifth inning with the game tied 2-2 after arguing a called third strike on Andrew Benintendi that ended Boston's first rally of the game.Sale opened the game with an eight-pitch walk to George Springer and struggled through the first three innings with subpar stuff and location.Houston took advantage in the second. Sale got two quick outs, but then walked Carlos Correa, plunked Martin Maldonado on the hand with a fastball and walked Josh Reddick. Springer followed with a hard grounder past third baseman Eduardo Nunez to put Boston ahead 2-0.Sale decided to go sleeveless despite a 48-degree first p... [More]
Sat Oct 1323:20Sale, Cora make early exits for Red Sox in ALCS Game 1
BOSTON (AP) — Red Sox ace Chris Sale and manager Alex Cora both made early exits in Game 1 of the AL Championship Series against the Houston Astros.Sale lasted just four innings Saturday night, giving up two runs on one hit and four walks.Cora wasn't far behind the lanky left-hander going back to the clubhouse. The rookie manager was ejected in the bottom of the fifth inning with the game tied 2-2 after arguing a called third strike on Andrew Benintendi that ended Boston's first rally of the game.Sale opened the game with an eight-pitch walk to George Springer and struggled through the first three innings with subpar stuff and location.Houston took advantage in the second. Sale got two quick outs, but then walked Carlos Correa, plunked Martin Maldonado on the hand with a fastball and walked Josh Reddick. Springer followed with a hard grounder past third baseman Eduardo Nunez to put Boston ahead 2-0.Sale decided to go sleeveless despite a 48-degree first pitch, and it took too long fo... [More]
Thu Oct 1119:39Red Sox hope to home-field advantage makes difference
BOSTON (AP) — The Red Sox hope home-field advantage makes a difference after consecutive Division Series eliminations.Boston began the postseason 0-2 on the road at Cleveland in 2016 and again at Houston last year.By winning a club-record 108 games this season, the Red Sox ensured home-field advantage through the postseason. They split at home against the Yankees last weekend, swept a pair of games in New York to advance and open the AL Championship Series against the World Series champion Astros on Saturday night.Chris Sale starts for the Red Sox and Justin Verlander for the Astros.Sale gave up seven runs in last year's opening 8-2 loss to Houston, including two home runs by Jose Altuve and by Alex Bregman. Sale made a rare relief appearance in Game 4 at Fenway Park, replacing Rick Porcello to start the fourth inning with Boston trailing 2-1. After Andrew Benintendi's two-run homer put the Red Sox ahead, Sale allowed Bregman's tying home run leading off the eighth and a one-out sing... [More]
Thu Oct 1118:49A capsule look at the Astros-Red Sox playoff series
A look at the best-of-seven American League Championship Series between the Houston Astros and Boston Red Sox:___Schedule: (All times EDT) Game 1, Saturday, at Boston, 8:09 p.m.; Game 2, Sunday, at Boston, 7:09 p.m.; Game 3, Tuesday, Oct. 16, at Houston, 5:09 p.m.; Game 4, Wednesday, Oct. 17, at Houston, 8:39 p.m.; x-Game 5, Thursday, Oct. 18, at Houston, 8:09 p.m.; x-Game 6, Saturday, Oct. 20, at Boston, 5:09 p.m.; x-Game 7, Sunday, Oct. 21, at Boston, 7:39 p.m. (All games on TBS).x-if necessary.___Season Series: Astros won 4-3.___Projected Lineup:Astros: CF George Springer (.265, 22 HRs, 71 RBIs), 2B Jose Altuve (.315, 13, 61), 3B Alex Bregman (.286, 31, 103, AL-best 51 doubles, 84 walks, 82 Ks), 1B Yuli Gurriel (.291, 13, 85), LF Marwin Gonzalez (.247, 16, 68), RF Josh Reddick (.242, 17, 47), SS Carlos Correa (.239, 15, 65), DH Tyler White (.276, 12, 42, .888 OPS in 66 games) or Tony Kemp (.263, 6, 30 in 97 games) or Evan Gattis (.226, 25, 78), C Martin Maldonado (.225, 9, 44 for An... [More]
Tue Oct 903:10Easy as 1-2-3: Astros put on spectacular show in ALDS sweep
CLEVELAND (AP) — When the challenge arose in August, the Houston Astros responded like champions.They're doing it again in October.Two months ago, last year's World Series winners hit one of those predictable lulls that every team encounters during the dog days of a season. Maybe feeling a bit overconfident and invincible, the Astros were caught atop the AL West by the Oakland Athletics, a scrappy squad that sneaked up on everyone in 2018.But just when it appeared the Astros might be in some trouble, they switched on their after-burners. After Aug. 18, Houston went 29-10 to finish with 103 wins."There is an extra gear that our guys have," explained manager A.J. Hinch. "And once we hit the postseason, it looks like, as of right now, our guys really, really turned it on."Showing no weaknesses while exposing Cleveland's flaws at every opportunity, the Astros took another step toward defending their crown Monday by finishing off a surprisingly easy three-game AL Division Series sweep wit... [More]
Mon Oct 819:10Odd path to playoffs: Kratz, Voit, Brasier take longer road
Of course Erik Kratz kept hoping for a moment like this. That's why he stuck around, through a dozen big league organizations, a couple of cruel demotions in the minors, a bunch of near-misses in the World Series.And the time he accidentally shot himself in the hand with a nail gun."I really feel like I've played my last game for the last 12 years because the game doesn't owe anybody anything," the Milwaukee catcher said. "When you understand that, you appreciate these times more than anything else."Luke Voit certainly never expected to hear crowds at Yankee Stadium chanting his name in October, especially when he was stuck at Triple-A for St. Louis in late July. Yet there he was, batting third as New York hosted Boston on Monday night.Ryan Brasier's path to these playoffs was unusual, too. The Red Sox reliever is a rookie — even though he made his major league debut in 2013.This postseason is full of stars, including Christian Yelich, Jose Altuve and Mookie Betts. Ronald Acuna Jr., ... [More]
Mon Oct 803:30LEADING OFF: Red Sox-Yankees all even, Astros try for sweep
A look at what's happening around the majors today:REVVED-UP RIVALSLuis Severino starts for the Yankees when they host Boston in Game 3 of the AL Division Series. They're 1-all going into the first playoff game between the teams in the Bronx since the Red Sox finished off a comeback from an 0-3 deficit in the 2004 ALCS at the old Yankee Stadium.Severino was 10-2 with a 2.74 ERA and .217 opponents' batting average at home, and is coming off four sharp innings against Oakland in the AL wild-card game. Ex-Yankee Nathan Eovaldi starts for Boston — he allowed no earned runs in three of four starts this year vs. New York.ROCK ITThe Astros try to complete an ALDS sweep over Cleveland when Dallas Keuchel starts Game 3 at Progressive Field. The defending World Series champions used dominant pitching by starters Justin Verlander and Gerrit Cole to open a 2-0 lead. Indians manager Terry Francona will tweak his lineup against the left-handed Keuchel, adding righty hitters Yandy Diaz and Brandon ... [More]
Mon Oct 800:30LEADING OFF: Red Sox-Yankees all even, Astros try for sweep
A look at what's happening around the majors Monday:REVVED-UP RIVALSLuis Severino starts for the Yankees when they host Boston in Game 3 of the AL Division Series. They're 1-all going into the first playoff game between the teams in the Bronx since the Red Sox finished off a comeback from an 0-3 deficit in the 2004 ALCS at the old Yankee Stadium.Severino was 10-2 with a 2.74 ERA and .217 opponents' batting average at home, and is coming off four sharp innings against Oakland in the AL wild-card game. Ex-Yankee Nathan Eovaldi starts for Boston — he allowed no earned runs in three of four starts this year vs. New York.ROCK ITThe Astros try to complete an ALDS sweep over Cleveland when Dallas Keuchel starts Game 3 at Progressive Field. The defending World Series champions used dominant pitching by starters Justin Verlander and Gerrit Cole to open a 2-0 lead. Indians manager Terry Francona will tweak his lineup against the left-handed Keuchel, adding righty hitters Yandy Diaz and Brandon... [More]
Sun Oct 718:10The bigger the stage, the brighter Houston's Bregman shines
HOUSTON (AP) — Ask any Houston Astro and they'll say the same thing: Alex Bregman was made for these moments.The young third baseman was great for the defending champions all season and now that the calendar has flipped to October he's taken his play to another level, slugging two home runs to help Houston to a 2-0 lead in the AL Division Series against the Cleveland Indians."He loves the bright lights," praised George Springer, MVP of the World Series last year. "He loves the big stage ... he believes he should get a hit every time or make the big play or score the big run. That's just who he is and when you have a guy like that it makes you want to do the same thing."Game 3 is Monday in Cleveland.The 24-year-old Bregman had the best year of his career this season, leading the AL with a career-high 51 doubles, and setting career marks by hitting .286 with 31 homers and 103 RBIs. His breakout season helped carry the offense in a year where last year's MVP Jose Altuve and star shortst... [More]
Thu Oct 420:45A capsule look at the Indians-Astros playoff series
A look at the best-of-five American League Division Series between the Cleveland Indians and Houston Astros:___Schedule: (All times EDT) Game 1, Friday, at Houston, 2:05 p.m.; Game 2, Saturday, at Houston, 4:37 p.m.; Game 3, Monday, Oct. 8, at Cleveland, 1:30 p.m.; x-Game 4, Tuesday, Oct. 9, at Cleveland, 4:35 p.m.; x-Game 5, Thursday, Oct. 11, at Houston, 4:07 p.m. (All games on TBS).x-if necessary.___Season Series: Astros won 4-3.___Projected Lineups:Indians: SS Francisco Lindor (.277, 38 HRs, 92 RBIs, 42 2Bs, 25 SBs), LF Michael Brantley (.309, 17, 76), 2B Jose Ramirez (.272, 39, 106, 34 SBs), DH Edwin Encarnacion (.246, 32, 107), 3B Josh Donaldson (.246, 8, 23 with Blue Jays and Indians), 1B Yonder Alonso (.250, 23, 83), RF Melky Cabrera (.280, 6, 39 in 78 games), C Yan Gomes (.266, 16, 48), CF Jason Kipnis (.230, 18, 75).Astros: CF George Springer (.265, 22, 71), 2B Jose Altuve (.315, 13, 61), 3B Alex Bregman (.286, 31, 103, AL-best 51 doubles, 84 walks, 82 Ks), SS Carlos Correa (... [More]
Thu Oct 414:12A capsule look at the Indians-Astros playoff series
A look at the best-of-five American League Division Series between the Cleveland Indians and Houston Astros:___Schedule: (All times EDT) Game 1, Friday, at Houston, 2:05 p.m.; Game 2, Saturday, at Houston, 4:37 p.m.; Game 3, Monday, Oct. 8, at Cleveland, TBA; x-Game 4, Tuesday, Oct. 9, at Cleveland, TBA; x-Game 5, Thursday, Oct. 11, at Houston, TBA. (All games on TBS).x-if necessary.___Season Series: Astros won 4-3.___Projected Lineups:Indians: SS Francisco Lindor (.277, 38 HRs, 92 RBIs, 42 2Bs, 25 SBs), LF Michael Brantley (.309, 17, 76), 2B Jose Ramirez (.272, 39, 106, 34 SBs), DH Edwin Encarnacion (.246, 32, 107), 3B Josh Donaldson (.246, 8, 23 with Blue Jays and Indians), 1B Yonder Alonso (.250, 23, 83), RF Melky Cabrera (.280, 6, 39 in 78 games), C Yan Gomes (.266, 16, 48), CF Jason Kipnis (.230, 18, 75).Astros: CF George Springer (.265, 22, 71), 2B Jose Altuve (.315, 13, 61), 3B Alex Bregman (.286, 31, 103, AL-best 51 doubles, 84 walks, 82 Ks), SS Carlos Correa (.239, 15, 65), 1B... [More]
Wed Oct 320:32A capsule look at the Indians-Astros playoff series
A look at the best-of-five American League Division Series between the Cleveland Indians and Houston Astros:___Schedule: (All times EDT) Game 1, Friday, at Houston, 2:05 p.m.; Game 2, Saturday, at Houston, 4:37 p.m.; Game 3, Monday, Oct. 8, at Cleveland, TBA; x-Game 4, Tuesday, Oct. 9, at Cleveland, TBA; x-Game 5, Thursday, Oct. 11, at Houston, TBA. (All games on TBS).x-if necessary.___Season Series: Astros won 4-3.___Projected Lineups:Indians: SS Francisco Lindor (.277, 38 HRs, 92 RBIs, 42 2Bs, 25 SBs), LF Michael Brantley (.309, 17, 76), 2B Jose Ramirez (.272, 39, 106, 34 SBs), DH Edwin Encarnacion (.246, 32, 107), 3B Josh Donaldson (.246, 8, 23 with Blue Jays and Indians), 1B Yonder Alonso (.250, 23, 83), RF Melky Cabrera (.280, 6, 39 in 78 games), C Yan Gomes (.266, 16, 48), CF Jason Kipnis (.230, 18, 75).Astros: CF George Springer (.265, 22, 71), 2B Jose Altuve (.315, 13, 61), 3B Alex Bregman (.286, 31, 103, AL-best 51 doubles, 84 walks, 82 Ks), SS Carlos Correa (.239, 15, 65), 1B... [More]
Fri Sep 2813:18Another term: Judge has MLB's top selling jersey again
NEW YORK (AP) — Aaron Judge again has baseball's most popular jersey.MLB says the Yankee slugger's No. 99 was the top seller for the second straight season. Judge beat out 2017 AL MVP Jose Altuve, who will be trying to repeat as a World Series champion with the Houston Astros next month.Judge and the Yankees will face Oakland in the AL wild-card game Wednesday. Teammate Giancarlo Stanton was ninth in jersey sales in his first season with New York.MVP candidates Javier Baez and Mookie Betts each jumped seven spots into the top five. Baez, an electrifying infielder with the Chicago Cubs, ranked third. Betts, the AL MVP favorite with the Boston Red Sox, was fifth.Clayton Kershaw was fourth on the list in what could be his final season with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Kershaw can opt out of the final two years of his deal at the end of the season. Bryce Harper ranked 13th in the last season of his contract with the Washington Nationals.Los Angeles Angels two-way sensation Shohei Ohtani ranked eighth. The Japanese rookie also had the most visited player page on the league's website.___More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/tag/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
Fri Sep 2812:38Another term: Judge has MLB's top selling jersey again
NEW YORK (AP) — Aaron Judge again has baseball's most popular jersey.MLB says the Yankee slugger's No. 99 was the top seller for the second straight season. Judge beat out 2017 AL MVP Jose Altuve, who will be trying to repeat as a World Series champion with the Houston Astros next month.Judge and the Yankees will face Oakland in the AL wild-card game Wednesday. Teammate Giancarlo Stanton was ninth in jersey sales in his first season with New York.MVP candidates Javier Baez and Mookie Betts each jumped seven spots into the top five. Baez, an electrifying infielder with the Chicago Cubs, ranked third. Betts, the AL MVP favorite with the Boston Red Sox, was fifth.Clayton Kershaw was fourth on the list in what could be his final season with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Kershaw can opt out of the final two years of his deal at the end of the season. Bryce Harper ranked 13th in the last season of his contract with the Washington Nationals.Los Angeles Angels two-way sensation Shohei Ohtani ranked eighth. The Japanese rookie also had the most visited player page on the league's website.___More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/tag/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
Wed Sep 2620:51Astros move AL West clinch party from hotel to clubhouse
TORONTO (AP) — The Houston Astros moved their celebration from the team hotel to the clubhouse.The Astros marked their second straight AL West title by dousing one another with wine and beer and enjoying cigars after Wednesday's 3-1 loss to the Toronto Blue Jays."We're getting used to this," infielder Alex Bregman said. "I like it."It was the second celebration of the day for the Astros, who clinched the division just after 2 a.m. Wednesday when Oakland lost at Seattle 10-8 in 11 innings.The Twitter account of the defending World Series champions posted videos of players, coaches and their partners jumping up and down in celebration inside a meeting room at The Ritz-Carlton Toronto."It was pretty unique," ace Justin Verlander said. "There's been some unique scenarios, but not like that one."Back inside the smoky, dripping clubhouse, the Astros enjoyed a party that was, in Verlander's words, "a little more traditional.""I hope we do this three more times," he said.Houston opens the AL... [More]
Wed Sep 2616:31Astros stay up late to celebrate back-to-back AL West titles
TORONTO (AP) — Houston Astros ace Justin Verlander had never before been in a conference room to celebrate winning a division title.Verlander and the Astros clinched their second straight AL West championship just after 2 a.m. Wednesday when Seattle beat visiting Oakland 10-8 in 11 innings on pinch-hitter Chris Herrman's home run.The Twitter account of the defending World Series champions posted videos of players, coaches and their partners jumping up and down in celebration inside a meeting room at The Ritz-Carlton Toronto."It was pretty unique," Verlander said. "There's been some unique scenarios, but not like that one."Houston opens the AL Division Series at home on Oct. 5 against Central Division champion Cleveland. Infielder Alex Bregman said he was "super pumped" to repeat as division winners."We haven't had the smoothest of rides, a little adversity along the way, but we've pushed through it and we're playing good baseball at the right time," he said.Left-hander Dallas Keuchel... [More]
Sun Sep 2301:06Braves clinch NL East crown; Yankees claim AL wild card spot
ATLANTA (AP) — The Braves capped a most surprising season by clinching their first NL East crown since 2013, with Mike Foltynewicz taking a no-hitter into the seventh inning Saturday in a 5-3 win over the Philadelphia Phillies.A year after going 70-92, manager Brian Snitker and his Baby Braves surged back into the playoffs.Atlanta makes its first postseason appearance since 2013 on Oct. 4 in the NL Division Series. The Braves won their 18th division title, tying the New York Yankees for the most in the majors since division play began in 1969.Philadelphia, which led the division in early August, is 6-14 this month.Foltynewicz (12-10) tipped his cap to a standing ovation as he left with runners on first and second in the eighth with a 4-0 lead.Arodys Vizcaino, in his first save situation since June 17, closed out the ninth for his 16th save.Jake Arrieta (10-10) allowed four runs, four hits and three walks in two innings, the shortest outing of his nine-year career.YANKEES 3, ORIOLES 2... [More]
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Tue 16-Oct-2018 10:42:59