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ALCS Game 3/NLCS Game 4 open thread

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Today could be the last day of the year that has two MLB games. Maybe one of them will have a good outcome.

Divisional Series - Tampa Bay Rays v Houston Astros - Game Five
Astros Game 3 starter Gerrit Cole will probably get a lot of guaranteed money this offseason.
Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images

If you’ve been hoping for an exciting League Championship Series round of this year’s MLB playoffs, the NL sure hasn’t delivered it yet. The Cardinals are so dead in the water that even if they do manage to pick up a win and avoid a sweep today, they’re still not going to seem like they’re really in the series.

Nobody comes back from a 3-0 deficit - except, of course, the 2004 Red Sox, which was funny at the time since it happened to the Yankees and we didn’t know how annoying Red Sox fans would become over the next 15 years. It would be funny to me if it happened to the 2019 Nationals, but I think you can pretty much stick a fork in the Cardinals.

Hopes for a World Series matchup that’s not “Team Meteor” really lie with the Astros. Their Game 2 against the Yankees on Sunday was tense, exciting, and ended with the right outcome. Maybe they can pull off another win to take an important-seeming 2-1 lead in the series tonight. It can’t hurt that they’ll have Cy Young contender Gerrit Cole on the mound for them.

The Yankees turn to Luis Severino, which is interesting if only because he only made four starts before the playoffs started, and one of those was a minor league rehab outing. He has not pitched more than five innings in any of these games. As the modern playoffs don’t generally play out with deep starting pitching outings - though there have been some exceptions this year - this may not even result in all that different of an outcome for the Yankees bullpen usage.

Today’s schedule:

  • Astros at Yankees, 4:08, Fox Sports 1
  • Cardinals at Nationals, 8:05, TBS

Astros lineup

  1. George Springer - CF
  2. Jose Altuve - 2B
  3. Michael Brantley - LF
  4. Alex Bregman - 3B
  5. Yuli Gurriel - 1B
  6. Yordan Alvarez - DH
  7. Carlos Correa - SS
  8. Josh Reddick - RF
  9. Martin Maldonado - C

Yankees lineup

  1. DJ LeMahieu - 1B
  2. Aaron Judge - RF
  3. Brett Gardner - LF
  4. Edwin Encarnacion - DH
  5. Gleyber Torres - 2B
  6. Didi Gregorius - SS
  7. Gary Sanchez - C
  8. Gio Urshela - 3B
  9. Aaron Hicks - CF

Seriously, Astros, just beat these guys. Thanks.