Astros can win it all with star-studded sluggers, elite pitching


Courtesy of KA Sports Photos and Creative Commons.

With his consistent pitching, Justin Verlander and the Houston Astros are preparing to make a deep playoff run.

Quite frankly, I don’t even think that the Yankees are the biggest threat to the Astros quest to win another championship that team would be the Oakland Athletics. Don’t get me wrong, the Yankees are a great team. You don’t get the second-best record in the American League without being a great team. However, in a potential matchup, the Yankees don’t scare me as much as the Red Sox did going into last year’s American League Championship Series.

I’m not sure if my confidence stems from the incredible pitching prowess the Astros have shown all season, or that the offense has proven its ability to keep up with the best units in the league. All I know is that a meeting between the Astros and the Yankees in the playoffs is going to end only one way. I see a series between these two going in the Astros way in no more than six games.

The first three pitchers taking the mound in games one, two and three are likely to be James Paxton, Luis Severino and Masahiro Tanaka going up against the two frontrunners for the Cy Young Award, Justin Verlander and Gerrit Cole, followed by future Hall of Famer Zack Greinke. 

Of those three starters for the Yankees, the team would have the best chance with James Paxton on the mound, who was a thorn in the Astros side when he still played in Seattle. However, Paxton would have to pitch out of his mind against Justin Verlander. It would end up being very tough for the Yankees to pull out more than one win in those first three games. 

Both of these teams have had phenomenal years, with the Yankees leading the league with 305 home runs hit this season and the Astros having one of the most dominant rotations in recent memory. The Astros simply seem to have it all. The lineup can hit from top to bottom, and there are no holes in the defense. 

Houston currently has four batters with 30 or more home runs this season, including MVP candidate Alex Bregman, who has belted 41 at the time of this writing. Beyond the strong starting pitching, the Astros also have great relievers in Will Harris, Ryan Pressly and Joe Smith, along with closer Roberto Osuna. 

Should the Astros win the pennant and go on to win the World Series again, there is absolutely no reason for the Yankees to feel ashamed. The Astros happen to have one of the best all-around units in MLB history, with the Cy Young Award and the AL Rookie of the Year all but in the bag. 

Factor in that the Astros could potentially have an MVP on their hands in Alex Bregman, and the ‘Stros look like they could be the first team to sweep all three awards in one season. The Yankees aren’t a bad team, they’re just unlucky. They just so happen to exist at the same time as these astonishing Astros.