Houston Astros vs Yankees ALCS 2017: Why it’s a generational battle

HOUSTON, TX - JULY 01: Didi Gregorius
HOUSTON, TX - JULY 01: Didi Gregorius /
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BOSTON, MA – OCTOBER 09: Ken Giles
BOSTON, MA – OCTOBER 09: Ken Giles /

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If you had to ask about what the storylines are going to be in this series, here are the top five.

#1 Short vs. Tall

The two MVP candidates of Jose Altuve and Aaron Judge have taken the baseball world by storm with their performances. What they have done is proven to everyone that it doesn’t matter if you’re short or tall. Anyone can play the game as long as they have faith in themselves. Either way, my best guess is these two will be rewarded by the end of the season.

But so far, Altuve’s postseason is better. The guy hit .500 for crying out loud and three homers in one game. Judge, on the other hand, is struggling. He’s struck out more times in a postseason series than anyone has in a lifetime in the postseason. But that doesn’t mean Judge will be waiting to strike. You can’t expect him to go down with a K every time.

We can only hope that even if Judge does get going, Altuve will still be the consistent sparkplug he has proven to be.

#2 Pitching

There’s no denying Houston’s starting rotation is better and should give them the edge in the series. When you have Dallas Keuchel and Justin Verlander as your game one and two starters at home, it should be a confidence boost for Houston. But while the Yankees don’t have the strong starting core, they can deliver in the postseason. Masahiro Tanaka had a stellar start in game three vs. the Indians. So he’ll be dealing as will be Luis Severino in game two.

Of course, the Yankees have a strong bullpen. If the Houston Astros were in a tight game, we know Aroldis Chapman will be coming in. Sure we’ve had moments where we’ve hit him. But we still need to have patient at-bats with him.

#3 Offense

Both teams have the best offenses in the game. The Houston

Astros are #1 while the Yankees are #2 in those offensive categories. It’s much like having a baseball version of the 1971 Nebraska-Oklahoma game. That might be a bad comparison to say here.

But we do know pitching won’t be dominant as much. I would expect maybe one or two games to have a tight 3-2 or 2-1 type game. If Keuchel and Verlander can get hot while the Astros bats get going, that’s a huge bonus for us. The Yankees offense was not dominant like ours in their series with Cleveland. But that still doesn’t mean we have them beat by a mile. I would expect them to have a game where they score more than five runs.

Our offense is stronger and should have the ability to take out the pitching staff. But the young core of both teams will also be a decisive factor.

#4 Old vs. New

The Yankees have a tradition of winning and excellence. The Astros have a tradition of that’s not the Yankees. A lot of Yankee fans will look back into the past and hope they help them out to win. Sure there have been moments where it seems like the ghost of Yankee’s past help them win because that’s who they are.

Their fans will always say this is the year we’re going to win it all. They have a good argument on that for this year. But we can’t let the intimidation of New York and the Yankees get to us. We have to worry about what we can do.

Two years ago, we went to Yankee Stadium and shut them out in a playoff game. We know we can win there and we know we can make a statement. But this series will be tougher.

If we beat the Yankees, we would be the first team to eliminate both the Yankees and Red Sox in the same postseason. That would be a huge statement to everyone.

But then again, we don’t need to prove anything to anyone because we have a good team that can win the World Series.

#5 America’s Team?

On September 11th, 2001, the Yankees suddenly found themselves as America’s team when the twin towers of the World Trade Center went down in terrorist attacks. They had a tremendous run to the World Series and that was perhaps the last time the Yankees were really cheered for by America.

Now here we are. Sixteen years later and we are a month-and-a-half removed from Harvey’s impact. There is a sense that the Astros are becoming America’s Team. Perhaps it’s premature to say because we haven’t won anything yet. But what I mean is that people felt bad for us after our city was flooded. Even New York fans deep down felt sorry and were wondering if there was a way they can help our city.

I highly wondered how this would affect the rest of the season and to be honest, even though we were still in first place in the AL West, I didn’t think we would get back to playing the way we wanted too. But we did and now, a lot of people, including some Indians fans, want us to beat the Yankees.

Publicly, there might be more fans wanting the Yankees to win because the market would feast in the rewards. But even so, I think the silent majority wouldn’t mind if the Astros would win the series. Even so, this run is showing everyone that Harvey never destroyed the soul of Houston. We still have the heart and we’re still here. Maybe for once, a story like this is deserving to reach the pinnacle of baseball dreams.

Next: Why Dallas Keuchel is the Yankees killer


  1. Don’t be surprised if the bias people pick against us. It’s ok! There were those that thought we couldn’t get by Boston. Just let them do their job.
  2. The Yankee fans may have plans to get their World Series this year. They have momentum, but momentum does not always mean an easy ride to the top. This is still a war. They’re not giving us a thing. We have to earn it.
  3. No matter what happens, we have to keep showing everyone that we’re still the toughest city in America.

Let’s Go Astros.