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Yankees Series Preview- Houston Astros

The Yankees continue their Home Stand against PROBABLE playoff teams when they take on the DEFENDING World Series Champions, the Houston Astros for THREE games this week right here in the Bronx. The Yankees took on the Los Angeles Angels over the weekend taking TWO of the three games to continue to roll and have the SECOND best record in baseball. The Astros and the Yankees played in the ALCS last season with the Astros winning Game SEVEN to win the series, the two teams met earlier this season in Houston, with the Yankees taking THREE out of FOUR, which PROPELLED their great run. I expect BOTH the Astros and the Yankees to return to the playoffs this season, which makes this week’s games a MUST WATCH.

Yankees- Angels Series Recap-

Game 1- After losing the last TWO games against a LAST place team in the Texas Rangers, the Yankees had their ACE, Luis Severino on the mound on Friday Night looking to END their LOSING streak. Sevy had his NINTH Quality Start of the season, giving up only ONE run in SIX innings to decrease his ERA to FIFTH best in the American League at 2.28. The Yankee offense scored only ONE run through SIX innings, thus Sevy ended up with a No-Decision.

Gleyber Torres has been the Crowned Jewel in the Yankee Farm System ever since he arrived from the Cubs back in 2016. Most EXPERTS expected him to make his Major League DEBUT last season but he hurt his NON-Throwing arm and had to get Tommy John Surgery. He made his Yankee DEBUT earlier this month and the BRIGHT lights of playing for the Most Prestigious Baseball Franchise has NOT affected him ONE bit. Torres MASHED the ball during the Rangers’ series hitting LONG Home Runs and that continued on Friday Night. After already driving in the Yankees’ FIRST run of the game in the second inning, Torres continued his HOT-Streak.

The Yankees took a 2-1 lead over the Angels and went to WIN and END their LOSING Streak by that score.

Game 2- Sonny Gray has had a TERRIBLE start to the season, but he looked GREAT in THREE of his last four starts so there was some Promise going into his start on Saturday Night, but Mike Trout CRUSHED the hopes’ of Yankee Fans. Trout, who is BY FAR the best player in baseball, has been really great at the Sports’ Cathedral, Yankee Stadium. He continued to CRUSH the ball at Yankee Stadium and had ONE of the BEST games of his Career and helped the Angels STEAMROLL to a 11-4 WIN on Saturday Night. Between him MASHING the ball for FIVE hits on Saturday Night and his Home Run on Friday Night off of Sevy, I was CRUSHED by Trout and came up with a GREAT idea.

Game 3- After Gleyber Torres taking over Game 1 of the series and Mike Trout DOMINATING Game 2 of the series, the teams played in a COLD and RAINY Yankee Stadium for the RUBBER game of the series yesterday afternoon. The Yankees had lined up Masahiro Tanaka, who had been TERRIBLE over his last TWO starts but this was a special day for him and his HOME country of Japan.

Shohei Ohtani, coming over from Japan was the BIG Free Agent acquistion for the Angels this offseason. He has been BOTH a GREAT Hitter and a GREAT Pitcher for the Angels thus far this season and been a KEY addition for them this season. Tanaka and Ohtani are the TWO biggest ACTIVE players from Japan and originally Ohtani was going to be the Angels’ starter on Sunday but his start was PUSHED BACK for some reason. I would guess that the Angels Front Office did not want to lay the PRESSURE of Ohtani pitching against a fellow Countrymen in the BIGGEST Media Market in the Country, this EARLY into his MLB career. I am FASCINATED to see Ohtani pitch against the Yankees and maybe we will be able to see that in the Postseason this year.

Despite NOT being the Starter, Ohtani was in the Batting Lineup for the Angels, so we would get to see him face Tanaka, who had the EDGE in this Match Up. Ohtani had TWO strike outs and a walk against Tanaka, who only gave up ONE run in his Six inning start. This was an IMPRESSIVE start for Tanaka and hopefully he can use yesterday’s start to ROLL for the rest of the season.

The Yankee offense scored THREE runs in the THIRD inning to take a 3-0 lead but ALL of their runs came in the UNCONVENTIONAL way. The THREE runs were scored by a Bases Load Walk, a Bases Loaded Hit By-Pitch and a RBI Ground Out, so there is NO great video for any of their runs.

The Yankee bullpen has NOT been great over the last week or so, but they got the last NINE outs of the game to WIN the game 3-1.

The Yankee offense was NOT great this weekend but they ESCAPED the weekend with TWO wins. IRONICALLY, the ONLY game of the series where the Yankees looked GREAT on offense was Saturday night, when they had a 4-1 lead EARLY in the game before the Pitching Staff gave up ten UNANSWERED runs to the Angels. The Middle of the order has not been TRASH for the last few games. Didi Gregorius, Giancarlo Stanton, Gary Sanchez, and Aaron Hicks have arguably been the WORST Hitters on the team, but they NEED to IMPROVE if the Yankees want to add ANOTHER Trophy to their World Series Cabinet.

First Baseman Greg Bird RETURNED to the Yankees on Saturday Night after starting the season on the Disabled List recovering from a Leg Injury. Bird is a GREAT Hitter that can hit a TON of Home Runs at Yankee Stadium, so his addition to the lineup should help the offense get better. Bird has had a TOUGH time STAYING on the Field throughout his SHORT career, but he is part of the FUTURE of the Yankees and they need him to remain HEALTHY and MASH the ball for the rest of the season.

For the CORRESPONDING move to bringing up Greg Bird, the Yankees sent down Utility Man Ronald Torreyes, which has really CONFUSED me. Toe has the ability to play EVERY position in the field, including being the EMERGENCY catcher and he was really GREAT at hitting the ball in the FEW opportunities that he got this season. Toe is a GREAT bench player and everyone on the team LOVED him, so I do NOT expect him to be on the Minors for very long, but his DEMOTION has raised a question around the Yankees’ Roster that is the BIGGEST example of Champagne Problems.

Ronald Torreyes, Brandon Drury, AND Clint Frazier are currently on the Yankees’ AAA team in Scranton Wilkes Barre and ALL three would be in the EVERYDAY lineup in MOST teams around the MLB. Between those three and Tyler Austin and Neil Walker, who were the First Basemen while Bird was GONE, are now just ROLE players on this team even though they should be EVERDAY starters in MLB. It will be INTERESTING to see what the Yankees do in terms of a POSSIBLE trade for a Starting Pitcher or another roster move, because FIVE players on their FORTY man roster DESERVE to be EVERYDAY starters and barring INJURIES, they are NEVER going to get that opportunity with the Yankees.

The Yankees take on the Astros this week in ANOTHER Benchmark series for them. The schedule EASES up for them a BIT after this series but they need to WIN this week to send a MESSAGE to the DEFENDING World Series Champs.

Yankees- Astros Pitching Match ups-

Game 1: Today- Justin Verlander vs Domingo German

Game 2: Tuesday Night- Charlie Morton vs CC Sabathia

Game 3: Wednesday Night- Dallas Keuchel vs Luis Severino

The Astros have lined up TWO of their best pitchers for the FIRST two games of the series and have Dallas Keuchel, who is EVERY Yankee Fan’s WORST NIGHTMARE pitching the LAST game of the series. Runs will be at a PREMIUM for the Yankee offense this week against one of the BEST pitching staffs in baseball.

BOTH Domingo German and CC Sabathia were TERRIBLE in the last start against REALLY BAD teams, that type of performance is NOT going to CUT it against the Astros. The Yankees need at least one of those TWO to have a GOOD start allowing the Yankees to win one of the first TWO games and let Sevy pitch the LAST game of the series looking to win the series.

I have started something NEW that is NOT really new. I am the BIGGEST Superstitious guy on this planet and one of my BIGGEST Superstitions is that the teams I ROOT for NEVER win games when I am LIVE tweeting. I did NOT do much live tweeting over the past few years with the Yankees but I broke that rule last season and yesterday I decided to NOT live tweet the game and the Yankees won, so I will NOT be live tweeting games for the FORESEEABLE Future.





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