Friday, October 13, 2017
Dallas Keuchel owned the moment and the Yankees in a way that only he can Friday night, throwing seven masterful innings to lead the Astros to a 2-1 victory in Game 1 of the American League Championship Series at Minute Maid Park.
Keuchel struck out 10—a postseason record by an Astros left-hander—and was backed by key contributions from longtime teammates Jose Altuve, who beat out an infield single and scored the first run in a two-run fourth, and Marwin Gonzalez, who threw out a runner at the plate to end the top of the fifth and preserve the shutout.
Quick aside, how does Camping World have enough money to buy the naming rights to the American League Championship Series? That’s kind of crazy.
Anyhow, it’s weird, I really don’t believe in just punting Game 1 of the ALCS, but at the same time, had the Yankees just thrown Sonny Gray tonight, they would have the pitching advantage in possibly three of the next four games (if Keuchel came back in Game 4, you could argue he’d be less effective on short rest). But that would be punting a game and that’s probably not a good idea, so the Yankees probably made the right move to go to their hottest pitcher. Tanaka just was slightly worse than Keuchel, just like what happened in 2015, when Tanaka was also slightly worse than Keuchel. Chad Green was also “wasted” in a loss, but, again, they had to use him to keep it close. It all just ended about as poorly as it could have ended.
Hopefully Severino pitches a great game on Saturday and hopefully Keuchel pulls a Tevor Bauer and is worse the next time he pitches.
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