Saturday is going to be one epic day of sports as there is a great college football schedule, the NHL, European 2020 soccer qualifiers and two Championship Series baseball games. The Washington Nationals will turn to Max Scherzer looking to take a commanding 2-0 series lead against the St. Louis Cardinals. Also, the New York Yankees and the Houston Astros get the American League Championship Series started with Masahiro Tanaka and Zack Greinke taking the mound.
Below is my pick for Game One of the American League Championship Series and Game Two of the National League Championship Series. All lines are from FanDuel Sportsbook.
New York Yankees (+142) @ Houston Astros (-164): O/U 9 runs scored (-108/-114)
The New York Yankees continued their playoff dominance over the Minnesota Twins and swept the Twins right to the offseason. The Yankees won the three games by a combined 23-7 and did not trail for even half an inning after the bottom of the third inning in Game One. New York has been off since October 7th, so they will have a big pitching advantage, rest wise, over the Houston Astros in this series.
The Houston Astros got off to a quick 2-0 series lead over the Tampa Bay Rays and looked like they were going to handle their business quickly in this one, but the Rays had other ideas. Tampa outscored the Astros 14-4 in the two games in Tampa and forced a deciding Game Five in Houston on Thursday night. The Astros got off to quick 4-0 start in Game Five and never looked back as they now prepare for the New York Yankees.
Game One Pitching Matchup: Masahiro Tanaka (1.80 ERA in 5.0 playoff innings) vs Zack Greinke (14.73 ERA in 3.2 playoff innings)
Game One Prediction: I like the Houston Astros to get off to a 1-0 ALCS lead.
(Wash leads 1-0): Washington Nationals (-140) @ St. Louis Cardinals (+122): O/U 7 runs scored (-120/-102)
The Washington Nationals used a masterful pitching performance from Anibal Sanchez to a 2-0 road win to start the National League Championship Series. Sanchez held the Cardinals hitless through 7.2 innings before Jose Martinez recorded a single to end the no-hit bid. The Nats got a RBI-double from Yan Gomes in the top of the 2nd and a Howie Kendrick RBI single in the top of the 7th to easily get the Game One win.
Game Two Pitching Matchup: Max Scherzer (2.77 ERA in 13.0 playoff innings) vs Adam Wainwright (0.00 ERA in 7.2 playoff innings)
Game Two Prediction: I like the Nationals to take a commanding 2-0 series lead as the series shifts to Washington.
MLB Playoffs Record: 14-7