With the first round of the 2017 MLB playoffs in the books, there are only two teams left in the American League who are still standing. Those two teams are the New York Yankees and the Houston Astros. Both teams have faced each other seven times this season and Houston won five of them. The Astros are currently favored to win this series and reach the World Series for the first time since 2005. However, the Yankees have embraced the underdog role this season and look poised to pull off another upset behind their powerful bats and elite bullpen. It should be a very competitive series throughout.
For game one of the series, the Astros will be sending out ace Dallas Keuchel. This season, Keuchel had an earned run average of 2.90 along with a 14-5 record. Despite those impressive statistics, Keuchel has even better numbers against the New York Yankees in particular. In his career, Keuchel has an earned run average of 1.24 against the Yankees and has never allowed a home run against the Yankees in over 50 career innings. Back in 2015, Keuchel pitched against the Yankees in the AL Wild Card game and pitched six shutout innings in a 3-0 victory. If Keuchel pitches like his normal self, there is very little that the Yankees will be able to do.
The Yankees will counter Dallas Keuchel by using Masahiro Tanaka. This season, Tanaka had an earned run average of 4.74 along with a record of 13-12. Tanaka has also struggled against the Astros this season by giving up eight earned runs in less than two complete innings of work. However, Tanaka was unbelievable in his only playoff start this season and shutout the Indians for seven innings in game three. One can assume that Yankees’ manager Joe Girardi chose Tanaka as the game one starter in the hopes that he can duplicate that gem against the Indians. However, it is clear that the Astros have a huge pitching advantage in game one of this series.
As for the lineups, I have to side with Houston. Houston’s lineup is full of young talent that possess ridiculous talent. The offense has the perfect blend of speed and power. Led by American League MVP candidate Jose Altuve, this team has the ability to score runs in bunches and overpower opposing teams. Altuve, in particular, had 24 home runs and 81 runs batted in while having a ridiculous .346 batting average. Joining him is teammate George Springer who hit 34 home runs this season and is now the leadoff hitter for the Astros. The Yankees do have a tremendous amount of power throughout the lineup. Led by rookie Aaron Judge who hit 52 home runs this season, this offense led the American League in home runs this season and will look to hit a couple of them off of Keuchel in game one. However, the Yankees are a little bit too dependent on home runs. The Astros have the speed and depth to score runs even when they are not hitting a lot of home runs. The same cannot be said about the Yankees. The Yankees have lived and died via the “long ball” all season long and one has to wonder if the Bronx Bombers can maintain their home run production.
As for predictions, I have to side with the home team. The Astros won 48 of their 81 games at home in the regular season and have a huge pitching advantage for game one. Tanaka has struggled mightily this season on the road and against Houston so one can expect him to struggle throughout the course of this contest. Having said that, the Yankees are riding a strong wave of momentum after overcoming that two game deficit in the first round in order to advance, so I can see this team making game one closer than most people anticipate.
As for score, I will take the Astros by a score of 6-4.
Yankees vs. Astros: Game Time, TV Channel & Viewing Details
Event: Yankees vs. Astros
Date: Friday, October 13, 2017
Start Time: 8:00 P.M. EST
Location: Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas
How To Watch Yankees vs. Astros On Mobile
Fox Sports Go App
Mobile user can watch the game using the Fox Sports Go app (iTunes Store | Google Play Store | Amazon Store| Windows). You’ll need a cable subscription though, like you would watching it on your desktop.
How To Watch Yankees vs. Astros Live Stream Online
Sling TV is a service that allows subscribers to watch live and on-demand TV channels on TVs, computer or mobile device. It’s just like a cable or satellite TV service, except it’s delivered over the internet. You can sign up for Sling TV’s free 7-day trial. If you cancel your subscription within seven days, you will not be charged. Once signed up, simply download the app for your computer or mobile device to start watching.