Game 1 of the ALCS will begin on Friday night between the Boston Red Sox and Houston Astros. The game is scheduled for 8:07 p.m. ET and will be televised on FOX. The Red Sox defeated the Tampa Bay Rays in four games in an exciting ALDS. As for the Astros, they took care of the Chicago White Sox in four games. We’ll break down the regular-season series and who won.
Astros won 5-2 over Red Sox
Houston took care of business against Boston at Minute Maid Park and in Fenway Park in the regular season. In their first series back in late May-early June, the Astros won three out of four games at Minute Maid. Houston outscored Boston by an average of 2.5 runs, with their largest win happening in the series opener (11-2).
Then when the two teams played each other at Fenway in June, the Astros’ bats came out swinging and took two out of three games. The only game that Boston won was the series finale, which was a slugfest, 12-8. For the Red Sox to have a shot in the ALCS, they will need to continue to pile on the runs, which they did in the ALDS against the Tampa Bay Rays.
When it comes to pitching, Boston’s best starting pitcher against Houston this season was Nick Pivetta, who pitched extremely well out of the bullpen in the ALDS. In his lone start against the Astros, Pivetta recorded nine strikeouts, while allowing three hits, and two earned runs in 6.0 IP.
For Houston, Framber Valdez had the most success against the Red Sox in the season. In two outings against Boston, Valdez had a 2-0 record, 1.26 ERA, and 18 strikeouts in 14.1 IP. The 27-year-old starting pitcher struggled in Game 2 against the White Sox as he gave up four earned runs, seven hits, and landed six strikeouts in 4.1 IP.
Surprisingly, Boston’s best hitter against the Astros in the regular season was not Rafael Devers, Xander Bogaerts, or Alex Verdugo. It was actually catcher Christian Vazquez. The veteran catcher slashed .350/.381/.400 with a double and three RBI in 20 at-bats. In the ALDS, Vazquez was one of the heroes as he hit a game-winning two-run home run in extra innings of Game 3.
Meanwhile for the Astros, outfielder Kyle Tucker had the most success against the Red Sox in the regular season. Tucker slashed .480/.500/.720 with six doubles and seven RBI in 25 at-bats. In the ALDS against the White Sox, the 24-year-old outfielder hit .294 at the plate with a team-leading two home runs and seven RBI.