Astros vs Indians: After completing back-to-back 100 win seasons, the Houston Astros complete the sweep of the Indians 11-3 at Progressive Field.
While the Yankees and Red Sox duke it out in New York, the Houston Astros swept the Cleveland Indians in three games. In fact, this marks the Astros second straight trip to the American League Championship Series, all while completing the first postseason sweep in franchise history. To be fair, the Astros looked flawless this entire series demonstrating how a winning club and defending champion should carry itself.
Game 1, Verlander: 5.1 innings, 2 ER, 7K, and 2BB
Game 2, Cole: 7 innings, 1 ER, 12K, 0BB
Game 3, Keuchel: 5 innings, 2ER, 2K, 1BB
Not bad for a loaded staff like the Astros have. The bullpen also came through in the clutch during this series. Guys like Colin McHugh, Lance McCullers Jr., Roberto Osuna, and Ryan Pressly provided the relief. Meanwhile, the Crush City bats came to life during this series. In my opinion, the man of the series is none other than Marwin Gonzales. For proof of why I believe that, look no further.
Aside from Gonzales, Jose Altuve, George Springer, and Alex Bregman all lifted the Astros offensively. However, the story of this series is the lack of offense on the Indians side of things. For example, take a look at the electric Astros’ offense from Game 1.
The Indians did not have the same success during this series. In particular, MVP candidate Jose Ramirez struggled in a major way. As a matter of fact, his lack of production hurt the Indians very badly. In 11 at-bats, Ramirez went 0-11 with only one run driven in, on a sac-fly.
To give a better overview of the offensive disparity, the Indians scored six runs the entire series. The Astros? They had 21 runs through three games hitting a .144 average throughout the series. Yeah, no dispute there. Adding fuel to the fire, the Indians failure can also be linked back to their bullpen issues. Reliever Andrew Miller, who has typically been reliable, just couldn’t get it going in this series. This is the same Miller who was on the disabled list three different times during the season.
However, the star of failure for the Indians was indeed Trevor Bauer. The nail in the coffin for his performance was when he drilled Alex Bregman and put him on base. From there, the Astros offense erupted in Game 3 and they never surrendered the lead.
Overall, while a short series, it sure was entertaining. The Astros reminded baseball that they indeed are the defending champions and the ‘Stros are full of confidence at the moment.
The Astros await the winner of the New York-Boston series. Until then, they can rest up and prepare to continue their title defense. As for the Indians, the title drought continues and is now at 71 years, and counting.