2022-10-26 · 3 min read · MLB/Baseball
Houston Astros and Alex Bregman

Houston Astros/Facebook | Johnny Milano/NY Times

From the point of view of a Jays’ fan, there was no preferred choice - Houston, the arrogant self-centered cheaters, or New York, the other arrogant self-centered cheaters. Boy, wouldn’t it have been great if Cleveland didn’t get the shaft in the ALDS? But I digress…
Houston, it would seem, is the new New England. For the fourth time in six years, the Astros will be playing in the Fall Classic - an outcome that shocks no one and impresses even fewer (unless you live in Houston, of course). A four-game sweep of the not-so-almighty Yankees, headlined by rookie sensation Jeremy Pena’s offensive antics, propelled the ‘Stros once again as Pena was crowned ALCS MVP in the process - a feat that fellow Astro Yordan Alvarez received just last year.
It may be a fitting end to Aaron Judge’s career in New York, as with two out in the bottom of the ninth he grounded back to Ryan Pressly on the mound - a weak ending to a spectacular collapse. As has become the norm in the Bronx, now the focus shifts to next year with many question marks. Aaron Judge is the obvious one, but should Aaron Boone return? I think he probably will, but that doesn’t mean he should. Brian Cashman too, is his job on the line? With the struggles Josh Donaldson has had - not to mention his deteriorating reputation amongst Yanks’ fans - is it even reasonable to allow him to return? What about Isiah Kiner-Falefa?
This offseason has the potential to be one of the largest we’ve seen in a while, with names like deGrom, Judge, Correa, and Turner highlighting an impressive collection of free agents. If New York lived up to their own expectations, that’d be a good thing right? Right now, the Yankees aren’t even the biggest spenders in New York - the Mets, in 2022, had a payroll of roughly forty million dollars higher than their cross-town rivals (290 million, compared to Yankees’ 240 million).
While Yankees fans suffer through the pain of an underwhelming postseason yet again, Houston is now set to take on a Philadelphia team that has everything going for them except, perhaps, the weather.
The World Series is slated to start this Friday, October 28th, in Houston. While neither team has officially confirmed their starters, one could expect Phillies’ ace Zack Wheeler to oppose Astros’ Justin Verlander in the pivotal Game 1. Wheeler, having one of the best stretches of pitching that he’s ever had, would appear to have the slight edge - he’s averaging just about a strikeout per inning this postseason, amounting to a 1.73 ERA over four starts of 25 ⅓ innings.
Verlander, on the other hand, has had mixed results. He struggled in Game 1 against the Mariners, allowing six runs over four innings, but bounced back against the Yankees when he allowed only a single run over six innings. It should be noted that Verlander started against the Phils’ one day after Philadelphia clinched and shut them out over five innings with ten strikeouts.
Fox will have the broadcast of all World Series games, with Joe Davis and John Smoltz having the call. This will be the first World Series in thirteen years that Joe Buck will not be apart of on-air - the last time it was someone different was in 2009, which coincidentally was the last time Philadelphia made the Fall Classic…
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By: Gus Cousins


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