LEADING OFF: Springer HR streak, Price not right vs Yankees
A look at what’s happening around the majors today:
Astros leadoff man George Springer has a chance to tie the postseason record for most consecutive games with a home run. Springer connected for the fifth game in a row Friday as Houston beat Cleveland 7-2 to open their AL Division Series.
Springer homered in the final four games of the World Series last year, earning the MVP award and powering Houston to its first championship. He’ll next face Carlos Carrasco of the Indians in Game 2 at Minute Maid Park.
Daniel Murphy set the big league mark by homering in six straight postseason games for the Mets in 2015. Springer’s five in a row is tied for second with Carlos Beltran, who did it with the Astros in 2004.
David Price (16-7, 3.58 ERA) pitches against Masahiro Tanaka (12-6, 3.75) and the rival Yankees as Boston tries to take a 2-0 lead in their AL Division Series at Fenway Park. Price has a 4.90 ERA in 42 career appearances (41 starts) vs. the Yankees and has struggled badly against them since signing a $217 million, seven-year contract with the Red Sox before the 2016 season. He was 0-3 with a 10.34 ERA in four starts versus New York this year, but 9-2 with a 2.98 ERA at Fenway overall.
The wild-card Yankees could be without center fielder Aaron Hicks, who left the series opener with tightness in his right hamstring Friday night and was replaced by Brett Gardner. Hicks tweaked the same hamstring in late September and missed three games before returning to the lineup.
“He’ll get examined further tomorrow, and have an MRI and everything,” manager Aaron Boone said. “He felt like it might have been cramping, so we’ll just have to see.”
Nolan Arenado and the Colorado Rockies get a day to rest and regroup after falling into an 0-2 deficit at Milwaukee. Game 3 of their NL Division Series is Sunday at Coors Field, with the Brewers trying to win their 11th straight overall and finish off a sweep.
Trevor Story, Charlie Blackmon and the rest of the big-hitting Rockies managed a total of just two runs and 10 hits in the two losses at Miller Park.
COMING UP EMPTY
Freddie Freeman and his Baby Braves teammates also hope a return home will wake up their bats. Atlanta has been outscored 9-0 by the Dodgers in losing the first two games of their NL Division Series. “You can’t blame any one person,” manager Brian Snitker said. “I mean, it’s just our whole lineup is having a hard time.” Los Angeles can sweep the best-of-five set in Game 3 on Sunday night in Atlanta.