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Astros vs. Yankees: Four things to know, prediction, how to watch as AL powerhouses meet in New York

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Thursday night at Yankee Stadium, the New York Yankees and Houston Astros will rekindle their rivalry in the first of four games in the Bronx. The Yankees have the best record in baseball (by a wide margin), and the Astros have the second-best record in the American League (by a wide margin). These were the top two Junior Circuit teams by a wide margin in 2022.

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“I think it’s always fun to compete against the best.” Astros third baseman Alex Bregman told on Wednesday.. “I think everyone is looking forward to playing against the best and competing with the best. Of course, everyone will be delighted.”

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Here is the American League standings as of Thursday morning:

  1. New York Yankees: 51-18
  2. Houston Astros: 43-24 (7 GB)
  3. Toronto Blue Jays: 39-30 (11.5 GB)
  4. Cleveland Guardians: 36–28 (11.5 GB)
  5. Boston Red Sox: 39-31 (12 GB)
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Only the New York Mets (45-26) have better records than the Astros among National League teams — the Astros just won two games against the Mets in Houston — so this series features two out of three. the best baseball teams. The Yankees and Astros are no rookies, although Houston has had New York’s number in recent postseasons. The atmosphere in the Bronx promises to be tense.

“It didn’t hook me” This was stated by Yankees head coach Aaron Boone. New York Post on Wednesday. “This is a team that we have a rivalry with. You appreciate being part of such a series. I don’t think I put more into it. It’s not October now. Well.”

Here are the details of the four-game series at Yankee Stadium. Games on the MLB network can be streamed on fuboTV (try for free).

Date Start time Starting pitchers Television

Thu, June 23

7:05 pm ET

LHP Framber Valdez (7-3, 2.78 ERA) vs. RHP Jameson Tylon (8-1, 2.70 ERA)

YES Network, AT&T SportsNet Software, MLB Network

Fri, June 24

7:05 pm ET

RHP Justin Verlander (8-3, 2.30 ERA) vs. RHP Luis Severino (4-1, 3.27 ERA)

Amazon Prime Video, AT&T SportsNet Software

Sat, June 25

13:05 ET

RHP Christian Javier (4-3, 3.07 ERA) vs. RHP Gerrit Cole (6-1, 3.14 ERA)

YES Network, AT&T SportsNet Software, MLB Network

Sun, June 26

13:35 ET

RHP Jose Urquidi (4-6, 4.63 ERA) vs. LHP Nestor Cortes (6-3, 2.31 ERA)

YES Network, AT&T SportsNet Software, MLB Network

We were so, so close to Cole vs. Verlander. The two former teammates at one point lined up facing each other, but Severino’s recent stay on the COVID-19 list forced the Yankees to reshuffle their rotation, so Cole and Verlander no longer line up to pitch on the same day. It’s a pity. It would be one of the best matches of the season on paper.

Here are four things to know ahead of this weekend’s series, with a prediction thrown in for good measure.

These teams have history

Lots of it. The Astros eliminated the Yankees in the 2015 Wild Card Game, 2017 ALCS, and 2019 ALCS. The Yankees have won the regular season (12-8 against the Astros since 2018), but no one really cares. October is the only thing that matters, and that postseason rivalry was one-sided.

Along with the Los Angeles Dodgers, the Yankees were the most outspoken team against the Houston sign theft scandal, with general manager Brian Cashman going so far as to say it was “the only thing that stoppedYankees from winning the 2017 World Series. It’s a stretch, but the bottom line is that the Yankees aren’t thrilled about the scandal and aren’t shy about letting everyone know.

And certainly not Yankees fans. When the Astros played at Yankee Stadium last year — their first visit to the Bronx since 2019, before the sign-theft scandal erupted — they were booed loudly. Bregman, José Altuve, and Carlos Correa heard the loudest whoops (George Springer hears residual whoops when he visits the Blue Jays).

Of course, the Yankees themselves used video replay equipment to steal the 2015-16 signs., albeit not in real time, and that was before MLB issued a memo informing teams of sign theft to face heavy penalties. The Yankees are not exactly innocent bystanders. In the end, these two franchises don’t lose their love. It will be an intense series.

Both teams succeeded in preventing the run

Are you expecting a hitting streak? You may be disappointed. The Astros and Yankees are two of the best injury prevention teams in baseball this season. They issue the first commands, despite their reputation as attacking forces. Here’s where the Astros and Yankees ranked in various run-avoidance measures ahead of Wednesday’s game:

Astros yankees

Number of runs per game

3.43 (3rd in MLB)

3.00 (1st in MLB)


3.03 (3rd)

2.88 (1st)


126 (3rd)

133 (2nd)

Strikeout rate

23.2% (11th place)

25.3% (1st)

Ratio K/VV

3.05 (7th)

3.68 (1st)

OPS of the enemy

0.632 (3rd)

0.611 (1st)

Pitching war

8.7 (6th)

11.4 (1st)

Defensive runs saved

25 (9th)

42 (2nd)

You can also dig deeper and look at things like chase speed (Yankees first, Astros seventh), swing frequency (Yankees first, Astros eighth), and enemy barrel speed (Yankees first, Astros fifth). Anything you can do to prevent runs these two teams can do well. The Astros and the Yankees choke their opponents every night.

The biggest difference between these two teams is the offense. The Yankees did not seventh fastest team to reach 50 wins in baseball history just serving well. They also lead the MLB in points per game (5.12) and OPS+ (121), and their ranking is the most aggressive statistic. The Yankees have the best record in baseball because they do everything well.

The Astros, meanwhile, are averaging just 4.31 runs per game, which ranks 17th in baseball and slightly below the MLB average of 4.33. There is an offensive gap in Houston because the Astros are third in homers (90) and fourth among the best OPS+ teams (111), but they are also ranked 17th in runs per game. Consistency matters and they don’t always get as much success.

Given the names on the list, I wouldn’t dismiss the Astros as the league’s average offensive team. They will ruin a pitcher’s day very quickly if he’s not careful. Both the Yankees and the Astros are run-avoidance juggernauts. They make you work on every run. Does this mean we’re in for a low-scoring streak? Sure, it’s possible, but the gods of baseball love to play tricks on us.

Who is hot, who is not?

The 162-game season is long and unforgiving, with every player going through ups and downs. As such, some players will head into the series this weekend in a hot streak. Here are three Yankees players who have been smashing the ball for the past two weeks:


Aaron Hicks





Anthony Rizzo





Gleyber Torres





Hicks’ numbers over the past two weeks are just okay, though he’s gotten some big hits lately, including a good double sweep of bases on Saturday and a good morning in the ninth inning on Monday. He and Joey Gallo were terrible in April and May, but in June they both picked up steam and are in the middle of their best parts of the season.

Notably absent: Aaron Judge. MLB home run leader is 6-of-33 (.182) in his last nine games. although he hit two home runs on Wednesday. Josh Donaldson and Giancarlo Stanton have yet to find their way after they were taken off the injured list earlier this month. Donaldson is 13 of 59 (.220) since his return. Stanton 6 out of 49 (.122).

Now, here are three Astros players who have been popular over the past two weeks:


Jordan Alvarez





Michael Brantley





Kyle Tucker





Alvarez is a real monster and I would say he is the best striker in the game. On Wednesday, he led baseball in OPS (1,037) and OPS+ (195), and he does so with comfortably better-than-average strikeouts (15.5%) and span (8.2%). Alvarez, owner of a new $115 million additionhit three homers in two games against the Mets earlier this week.


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