Home MLB Twins Even Series Against Astros, Now Heading Back To Minnesota: Is Houston In Big Trouble??

Twins Even Series Against Astros, Now Heading Back To Minnesota: Is Houston In Big Trouble??

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Twins Even Series Against Astros, Now Heading Back To Minnesota: Is Houston In Big Trouble??
(Credit: Carmen Mandato / Getty Images)

The Houston Astros find themselves in unfamiliar territory having dropped game two of their ALDS battle against the Minnesota Twins. 

The disappointing 6-2 loss has evened the series at one game apiece, setting the stage for an intense game three back in Minnesota.

The Astros, who clinched the American League West division on the final day of the regular season with help from the Seattle Mariners, are no strangers to facing adversity.

However, the way that Houston lost last night felt just a little different.

All-Star pitcher Framber Valdez, who played a pivotal role in the Astros 2022 postseason success, struggled in his first playoff start since Game 6 of last year’s World Series.

Valdez was outpitched by the Twins’ Pablo Lopez, who delivered an impressive seven scoreless innings.

Reflecting on the game, Astros third baseman Alex Bregman said: “I just feel like in the postseason you try to win every pitch of every game and execute. Obviously, we didn’t do that tonight. Tip your hat to Pablo [because] he pitched really well. We didn’t do enough offensively, but we have to regroup.”

Historically, when an ALDS series tied at 1-1 follows the current 2-2-1 format, the team heading home for Games 3 and 4 has won the series 67% of the time. 

The Astros do have a strong 51-30 record away from home this season, including a remarkable 14-3 record in their last 17 road games.

Astros outfielder Chas McCormick acknowledged the challenges ahead, stating: “It’s going to be a big crowd, it’s going to be loud. They got Sonny Gray on the mound, but we’ve been in this position before. Obviously, it’s the playoffs. It’s going to be back and forth. We just have to go to Minnesota and be ready to play and be ready to hit and put up runs.”

For Game 3, the Astros will turn to pitcher Cristian Javier. Though not in the same form as last season, Javier showed promise with a strong six-inning performance in his final regular-season start.

Astros catcher Martín Maldonado expressed confidence in Javier, saying: “We’ve got Javi, and I feel like Javi, he’s made for big games. We all saw it last year in the World Series, and we all saw what he did in Arizona in the last game. We’ve got one of our best guys going.”

Despite their strong offense, the Astros were unable to contain the Twins Carlos Correa, who went 3-for-4 with two doubles and three RBIs in Game 2.

Correa’s postseason excellence has been a constant for the Astros over the years, earning him accolades from former teammate Bregman, who called him “one of the best players in the league.”

 

This season, the Astros starting pitching is not as strong as it was in their 2022 World Series run, which is slight cause for concern. 

Astros manager Dusty Baker summarized the situation, saying: “We know we’re a good road team. We’d like to bring it back to the house here or win it there. So that’s our goal, and their goal is to win it there. So we’ll see come Tuesday.”

Are the Astros in trouble???

Who will end up winning the series?

 

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