Aside from Aaron Judge doing what he often does when the opposition is actually beating in front of him is the New York Yankees were buoyed by the performances of several newcomers in the 5-4 win over the hosts Houston Astros on Saturday.
The final of the three-game series takes place on Sunday evening.
On Saturday, from rookie right-hander Jhony Brito, who pulled off goalless relief in 3 2/3 innings, to a quartet of rookies in the back half of the lineup who added offense, the Yanks (67-69) was helped by the youth for the fifth time in six games to win.
Shortstop Anthony Volpe finished the game 1-3 with a double, two walks, a stolen base and a run made. Austin Wells and Everson Pereira delivered RBIs in back-to-back plate appearances in the fifth inning. Oswald Peraza included a runs-scoring single among his three hits. And in the fifth round, Jason Dominguez made the decisive run due to a mistake.
The Yanks had four players aged 24 or younger with RBIs for the first time since 1970.
“I really liked the amount of competitive attacking from the guys.” Yanks said manager Aaron Boone.
Right-hander Michael King (3-5, 2.96 ERA) will start Sunday as the Yanks follow a series run. It’s his 44th appearance but only his fourth start of the season.
King threw four scoreless innings — and a season-best 61 pitches — against the Detroit Tigers on Tuesday, allowing three hits and posting five strikeouts, but was not included in the decision Yanks‘ 4-2 win. King is 0-1 this season with a 2.08 ERA as a starter.
King is 2-1 with a 3.38 ERA in five career appearances against the Astros. Last month against Houston he worked twice from the bullpen, throwing 2 2/3 innings without a score, conceding two hits and recording four strikeouts in two innings Yanks wins. King earned a win and a lead in those games.
Right-hander Cristian Javier (9-2, 4.66) is the scheduled starter for the Astros (77-60) on Sunday. Despite avoiding defeat in his last six starts, Javier is 2-0 with a 5.83 ERA and an opponent’s 0.887 OPS. He has conceded seven homers and 18 walks over 29 1/3 innings during that span.
Javier is 2-0 with a 1.44 ERA across five career appearances (four starts) against the Yanks. He didn’t take the decision into account Astros‘ Lost 4-3 away to them on August 3 after allowing three runs with four hits – including two homers – and three walks with four strikeouts over 4 2/3 innings.
Astros Left fielder Michael Brantley made his first home start after missing the first 132 games of the season following right shoulder surgery. He paid off immediately when he hit a two-run home run into right field on his first shot, his first home run at Minute Maid Park since June 17, 2022.
The Astros were equal parts patient and eager to get Brantley back in the game. Long considered a professional hitter, he adds another capable left-handed hitter to a roster that only two others hit from this side of the plate: Yordan Alvarez and Kyle Tucker.
After his 2v4 effort against the Yanks, Brantley is 4 of 13 with four RBIs in four games. The Astros I hope the last month will give Brantley time to prepare for what will hopefully be further extension of the postseason.
“He’s the same old Brantley” Astros said manager Dusty Baker. “He worked hard to get to this point. He’s slacked off and hasn’t rushed his rehab effort. He will be a key factor on the track.”
https://deadspin.com/yankees-riding-youth-movement-into-finale-vs-astros-1850800483?utm_source=regular Yankees ride youth movement into finals against Astros