The prior week in MLB was about a team in the American League clinching the American League Championship Series, a club in the AL hires a new manager, and a first baseman undergoes surgery.
Houston Astros Advance to World Series by Defeating New York Yankees in ALCS
The Houston Astros are headed back to their second World Series in three years as they defeated the New York Yankees by a score of 6-4 in Game 6 of the American League Championship Series Saturday night.
The primary reason for the Astros returning to the Fall Classic is due to the heroics of their second baseman Jose Altuve.
— MLB (@MLB) October 20, 2019
Altuve crushed a walk-off two-run home run during the ninth inning against Yankees closer Aroldis Chapman.
The small infielder was selected as the ALCS MVP, per MLB.
No doubt about it.
— MLB (@MLB) October 20, 2019
Altuve winning the MVP was logical as he was the best player for the Astros during the series, by compiling a .348 batting average and two home runs, including the walk-off during the six games.
Altuve made some history with the home run, as he joined Bill Mazeroski (Game 7 of the 1960 World Series) as the only players to hit a walk-off home run to end a postseason series after their team had blown the lead in the same inning, per MLB Stats.
From @jaysonst: José Altuve joins Bill Mazeroski (Game 7 of the 1960 WS) as the only players to hit a walk-off HR to end a postseason series after their team had blown the lead in the same inning.
Both came against the Yankees. pic.twitter.com/Uy4pe2usId
— MLB Stats (@MLBStats) October 20, 2019
He’s also the first second baseman ever to win both a regular-season MVP and a postseason-round MVP in his career, per Sarah Langs of MLB.com.
José Altuve is the first second baseman ever to win both a regular-season MVP and a postseason-round MVP in his career.
— Sarah Langs (@SlangsOnSports) October 20, 2019
Altuve is a great player and got to share a special moment with his daughter at the end of the game, per Jeff Passan of ESPN.
Jose Altuve the moment he saw his daughter is just too much. pic.twitter.com/mqq3L4xEEF
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) October 20, 2019
The Astros will now focus on their opponents for the World Series in the Washington Nationals. The Nats boast a formidable starting rotation and have a solid lineup.
The World Series is shaping up to be unique as it’s the first postseason series to have five of the top 10 pitchers in strikeouts and is the first World Series since 1945 to feature six of the top 20 pitchers in ERA, per ESPN Stats & Info.
The Astros-Nationals World Series features elite starting pitching:
– It's the first postseason series ever to feature 5 of the top 10 pitchers in strikeouts
– This is the 1st World Series since 1945 to feature 6 of the top 20 pitchers in ERA (via @EliasSports) https://t.co/c19HZj5r8V
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) October 20, 2019
Los Angeles Angels hire Joe Maddon as New Manager
The Los Angeles Angels have hired Joe Maddon to be their new manager, per a team announcement.
OFFICIAL: The Los Angeles Angels have agreed to terms with manager Joe Maddon. pic.twitter.com/PKZHBaljl8
— Los Angeles Angels (@Angels) October 16, 2019
The terms of the contract will be about three years, and he’ll earn between $12-$15 million, per Jesse Rogers of ESPN.
Joe Maddon deal with Angels likely to be for 3 years. In the 12-15 mil range.
— Jesse Rogers (@JesseRogersESPN) October 16, 2019
Maddon was the favorite to become the next manager of the Angels when they interviewed him last week.
The interesting aspect is that former manager Buck Showalter was the runner-up for the job, per Bob Nightengale of USA Today.
— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) October 16, 2019
Maddon previously managed the Chicago Cubs and Tampa Bay Rays.
Before helping those two clubs achieve success, he spent 30 years in the Angels organization in several roles, including two stints as interim manager in 1996 and 1999.
Maddon faces a tough task trying to turn the Angels around as they have four straight losing seasons and haven’t made the postseason since 2014.
He’s the right person for the job, as indicated by him leading all MLB managers in regular-season wins with 917 and postseason appearances with seven from 2010-19, per MLB Stats.
— MLB Stats (@MLBStats) October 16, 2019
Atlanta Braves First Baseman Freddie Freeman Undergoes Elbow Surgery
Atlanta Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman underwent arthroscopic surgery on his right elbow last week, and he’s expected to be ready for spring training, per a team announcement.
Atlanta Braves 1B Freddie Freeman underwent arthroscopic right elbow surgery: pic.twitter.com/yfa5dZd5va
— Atlanta Braves (@Braves) October 18, 2019
The surgeon removed three fragmented loose bodies and cleaned up multiple bone spurs from his elbow during the operation.
Freeman had a phenomenal regular season for the Braves as he compiled a .295 average and .938 OPS in 158 games with 34 doubles, 38 home runs, and 121 RBIs.
The first baseman played through the injury during the playoffs, and it had an impact as he posted a .200 average and .673 OPS with one home run in five games against the St. Louis Cardinals during the National League Division Series.
The Braves will need Freeman healthy to win the NL East division next season.
- Chris is a New Jersey native whose favorite sports team is the Arizona Diamondbacks. He previously attended Western New England College to study Sports Management. Chris has been following the Diamondbacks since he was 12. You can find him on Twitter at @aecanada12.
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