Three games is really not a slump, but in a seven game series it can be a killer trend that needs to be reversed.
And that is where the Houston Astros stand entering the critical fourth game of their series with the New York Yankees. They drilled the Boston Red Sox in four games with an offense that was the equivalent of having nine prime time Jose Altuves in the lineup. They are extremely fortunate to be up 2-1 in the ALCS as they have been hitting like they have nine Rick Ankiels circa 2013 in the lineup.
The Astros have squeezed out five runs in the first three games of this series thanks mostly to the power bat of Carlos Correa, the legs of Jose Altuve and the third game wildness of Dellin Betances. What do they need going forward?
- They need to continue to ride Altuve and Correa as far as their hot streaks will take them
- They need someone else to step up because through three games, Altuve and Correa have nine of their 14 hits and have scored four of their five runs and knocked in three of those.
- Who needs to step up? Take your pick
- Yuli Gurriel at 2-for-9 is the only player other than Altuve or Correa with 2 hits – we know what he can do when he gets super hot as in the ALDS.
The bottom line is that the Astros need to take the pressure off the Lance McCullers Jr. / Brad Peacock tandem they will likely use on Tuesday and get some folks not only on base, but all the way home. Their offense has been predicated on being deep and turning over. They need to take some pitches and take some pitches the other way and get back to what made this team the most fearsome offense in baseball.