It’s a do-or-die Friday night for the New York Yankees as they host the Houston Astros in what could be the Yankees final game at Yankee Stadium in 2019. The Astros were able to come away with an 8-3 win Thursday night to take a 3-1 series lead and are now just one win away from a date with the Washington Nationals in the World Series.
The Houston Astros now turn to Justin Verlander who has given up six runs in two games pitched against the New York Yankees in 2019. Overall for his career, Verlander has pitched against the Yankees 22 times and has a .252 batting average against in 540 at-bats. The Yankees will turn to James Paxton who also has given up six runs against the Astros in two appearances this season. For his career, Paxton has held the Astros to a .244 batting average against in 307 at-bats.
Below is my pick for Game 5 of the American League Championship Series. All lines are from FanDuel Sportsbook.
(Hou leads 3-1): Houston Astros @ New York Yankees: No line currently available
Zack Greinke started off with no control, but the veteran right hander was able to right the ship and produce a strong start in Game 4 of the American League Championship Series. The Yankees got a run in the bottom of the first inning thanks to one hit and three walks issues by Greinke, but the offense could not get much more going after that. New York held onto that 1-0 lead until the top of the third when George Springer came up with two runners on base and hit a 408 foot bomb to left field to give Houston a 3-1 lead. The Yankees had a chance to damage after loading the bases in the bottom of the 5th, but Ryan Pressly was able to get Edwin Encarnacion to strike out swinging and to end the inning.
Not being able to capitalize in the 5th cost the Yankees dearly as Carlos Correa came to the plate in the top of the 6th with two men on and crushed a 403 foot three-run home run to left field to give Houston a 6-1 lead. The Yankees were able to get two back in the bottom half of the 6th inning thanks to a Gary Sanchez two-run home run, but that was all the Yankees would get. The Astros tacked on two late insurance runs to nab an 8-3 win Thursday night.
Game Five Pitching Matchup: Justin Verlander (3.21 ERA in 17.1 playoff innings) vs James Paxton (5.14 ERA in 7.0 playoff innings)
Game Five Prediction: This game goes back to Houston for a Game 6. Back the Yankees Friday night.
MLB Playoffs Record: 17-10