These have just been good playoffs so far. Mostly competitive games with good storylines and big moments. I think the four teams left will generally continue that trend throughout the LCS and then into the World Series, whatever the final match-up. I’m not sure if I care THAT much which teams win each LCS, though. I’m pretty much strictly in observation and enjoyment mode …
San Diego Padres 8, Philadelphia Phillies 5 – NLCS Tied 1-1
The Phillies got out to a big early lead in this one, and with the Phillies already up a game in the series – and with the series heading back to Philadelphia – it seemed like the Padres were in serious trouble.
But the Padres started chipping away at the Phillies’ lead in the bottom of the second, and then the floodgates opened with a five-run fifth inning, kicked off by Austin Nola driving in a run off of his brother Aaron:
The runs poured on from there, and the Padres ultimately took the game and evened the series 1-1.
Neither Aaron Nola nor Blake Snell had a good day, which is going to happen sometimes, but I suppose it’s a reminder that even the very good and hot starting pitchers won’t dominate every time out in the postseason.
Josh Hader dominated in the 9th again, though, striking out the side in order, and it definitely seems like whatever was plaguing him after the trade to the Padres is long behind him. He is throwing triple-digits for the first time in his career, and the results are absurd:
Game Three is Friday at 6:37pm CT, with Joe Musgrove facing Ranger Suarez.
Full game highlights:
Houston Astros 4, New York Yankees 2 – HOU Leads ALCS 1-0
I wouldn’t say it’s because of their compressed and then late-night-plus-travel-laden ALDS schedule, but the Yankees came into this one without much for Justin Verlander. The well-rested possible Cy Young winner struck out a whopping 11 Yankees over his 6.0 innings of work, allowing just a solo home run to Harrison Bader.
The whole game wound up a solo homer fest, with five of the six runs scored via solo homers. For the Astros, it was Yuli Gurriel, Chas McCormick, and Jeremy Peña, and for the Yankees it was Bader and Anthony Rizzo:
So the Astros win the Home Run Derby 3-2 and the game 4-2. They say you need homers to win in October and it was certainly true in this one.
Game Two is tonight at 6:37pm CT, with Luis Severino facing Framber Valdez.
Full game highlights: