Astros close out the Yankees, head to the World Series

There’s a reason teams fight so hard during the regular season to gain home field advantage in the playoffs. After losing 3 consecutive games on the road to fall behind 3-2 in their best of 7 ALCS series against the New York Yankees, the Astros proved there’s no place like home. The Astros returned home to the loud and raucous confines of Minute Maid Park and took games 6 and 7 to win the AL pennant and punch their ticket to the 2017 World Series.

The Astros closed out the New York Yankees, 4-0, in a dramatic Game 7 of the American League Championship Series. This marks the Astros first World Series appearance since 2005, and their first American League pennant in franchise history.

Astros pitching ace Justin Verlander was named the ALCS MVP. All Verlander did was strike out 13 and pitch an entire game in route to a 2-1 Astro victory in game 2. He followed that up with a 7-1 win in game 6, striking out 8 and going 7 strong innings.

“We’ve earned it,” Astros manager A.J. Hinch said. “I think our team has been singularly focused from the very beginning. In Spring Training, we felt we had this caliber team, and at that point, we stopped talking about it. There’s two teams left standing, and I don’t care what cities they’re from, one of them is from Houston.”

The Astros (101 wins) will face the NLCS champion Los Angeles Dodgers in the World Series. The Dodgers posted the best record in baseball this year (104-58). This will mark the first time since 1970 (Reds-Orioles) that 100-win teams will meet in the World Series. “It’s something special, man,” shortstop Carlos Correa said. “It’s like, ‘We’re going to the World Series.’ It’s something you think of and dream of as a little kid, and now it’s real.”

The World Series will begin with games 1&2 (10/24 & 25) in LA beginning at 7:09 pm CST. Games 3-5 (10/27-30) will take place at Minute Maid Park with the same start time.