Houston looks to take a commanding 2-0 lead
Astros playoff report presented by APG&E: ALDS Game 2 preview
The Astros got the job done on Friday. Justin Verlander outlasted Tyler Glasnow, and he was able to get the run support needed with some timely offense as Houston would take control of the game and go up 1-0 in the series. On Saturday night, they will look to repeat that success with Gerrit Cole on the mound. Here are the details you need to know about Game 2:
When: Saturday, 8:07 p.m.
Where: Minute Maid Park - Houston, Texas.
Streaming: Fox Sports App.
Pitching matchup: Gerrit Cole vs. Blake Snell.
Series: HOU leads 1-0.
|Date & Time (Central)||Location||Pitching matchup|
|Game 1||Astros 6, Rays 2||Minute Maid Park, Houston||Verlander (W) vs. Glasnow (L)|
|Game 2||Sat 10/5, 8:07 PM||Minute Maid Park, Houston||Cole vs. Snell|
|Game 3||Mon 10/7, TBD||Tropicana Field, St. Petersburg||Greinke vs Morton|
|Game 4*||Tuesday 10/8, TBD||Tropicana Field, St. Petersburg||TBD vs. TBD|
|Game 5*||Thursday 10/10, TBD||Minute Maid Park, Houston||TBD vs. TBD|
* If necessary.
+ Projected starters.
Another potential pitcher's duel
Obviously, on Houston's side, they have an ace-caliber pitcher in Gerrit Cole heading to the mound who has not lost a game since May 22nd. He's also on a streak of nine-straight games with double-digit strikeouts and has gone at least seven innings in four of his last five. He's one of the hottest pitchers in baseball, and the Astros have the luxury of starting him in Game 2.
That doesn't mean that the Astros have it easy at the plate, though, as they'll be going up against 2018 Cy Young winner Blake Snell. Much like Tyler Glasnow, Snell was one of Tampa Bay's strong arms sidelined during the year with an injury. He saw playing time in September, working his pitch count up to 62 in his last start of the regular season. While he hasn't had great success since returning to the rotation, he does possess the upside that could give Houston's bats trouble and create another tightly-contested game early in Saturday's game.
Opportunity for Houston to take control
In a best-of-five, going up 2-0 can be seen as momentous as taking a 3-0 lead in a seven-game series. Houston has that opportunity Saturday night, so look for them to continue to go after hard contact at the plate like they did in Game 1. If they can provide run support for Cole, they should be able to ride a lead to the end and put themselves in a position to only need one win out of the next three games to move on to the ALCS.
Be sure to check SportsMap after the final out for an in-depth recap of the game, and follow me on Twitter for updates and reactions throughout each playoff game: @ChrisCampise
The Astros playoff report is presented by APG&E.