Sunday, October 7, 2018

Sunday Morning Game 2 Hot Links

Okay then. The Astros were kept quiet, Gerrit Cole kept the Indians quieter, and now the Astros have a 2-0 lead in the ALDS.

*Division Series, team up 2-0: 52
Won in three: 30
Won in four: 13
Won in five: 2
Lost in five: 7

So of the 52 times since 1995 that a team has gone up 2-0, that team has gone on to win the Division Series 45 times (86.5%).

Teams that were up 2-0 in a Best-of-Five and lost the series:
2017 Cleveland Indians
2015 Texas Rangers
2012 Cincinnati Reds
2003 Oakland Athletics
2001 Oakland Athletics
1999 Cleveland Indians
1995 New York Yankees

McTaggart notes that, in the 2-2-1 format, teams that win the first two home games win the series 24 out of 27 times.

FanGraphs has the Astros at 86.8% to win the ALDS. FiveThirtyEight has Houston at 90%.

*Gerrit Cole was phenomenal, throwing 7IP, 3H/1ER, 12K:0BB. He needed 98 pitches, 70 were thrown for strikes. Cole's one bad pitch was a Francisco Lindor home run that looked like it might hold up.

Cole's three previous postseason starts: 16IP, 11H/7ER, 14K:3BB.

It was Cole's sixth 12+ strikeout game of the season, and his 4th with 12+ Ks and no walks. It's his 3rd 12+ strikeout game with fewer than 100 pitches thrown in 2018. Cole:
There's no doubt we expect to be good, but this is a team effort. So, we expect to keep our team in the ballgame. I don't know about all the personal accolades or all the dominance or that kind of stuff, but we just want to put up a fight. 

*More Cole:
I'm pretty thrilled with the no walks. Baserunners in postseason games are kind of tough to deal with at times. Sometimes the walk is needed. But [Maldonado] was just dropping down the right signs, and we were just pounding the zone. Pretty special day.

It's always fun when you got a guy like that throwing strikes and overpowering the other team. It's really fun. That's why I didn't go out there [to the mound] once. He was in a rhythm. He knew coming into the game what he wanted to do, and he did it.

Cole joins Tom Seaver as the only pitchers in MLB history to strike out 12 with no walks in a postseason game. Lol Seaver lost his game - 1973 NLCS G1 - because he allowed two solo homers. Trash.

[Cleveland] is one of the best offenses in the league. They can do damage. They can put long at-bats together. Cole used all his pitches. He was creative. What else can I say? He was awesome.

Jerome Solomon: Gerrit Cole set the tone for the Astros in Game 2.

*Houston held Cleveland to three hits for the 2nd straight game. Cleveland had gotten three hits or fewer just four times in the regular season. The last time they were held to three hits in consecutive games was August 22/23, 2017.

*Marwin went 4x4 with 2RBI and put the Astros up 2-1. He has a four-game postseason hitting streak. The Astros are 8-3 in postseason games when Marwin gets a hit. Francona, on the Marwin AB:
With a one-run lead, and with Gonzalez coming up the way he had swung the bat against him prior and Andrew's history, I felt really good about it. Didn't work out the way we obviously planned.

I'm proud of him because he's had to fight and claw, and he's been a huge part of our success not only this year, but recent years, and that's pretty awesome to see him come through.

Marwin was 1x8 against Andrew Miller with 6K:0BB prior to the 2-run hit. Jake Kaplan: Marwin's switch-hitting ability paid off.

Chandler Rome takes you inside the two-run 6th inning rally.

*Alex Bregman took Tyler Bauer deep. It was glorious. In 20 postseason games, Alex Bregman is hitting .231/.291/.500. He's 3x6 with 2HR in the ALDS.
*Bauer: I'd say that was a bad pitch.

*Rustin Dodd: Alex Bregman is heating up, and that's bad news for everybody else. Bregman:
The one thing that us winning the World Series last year did is drive us to win another one.

*Tyler White was intentionally walked twice. Jeff Bagwell was intentionally walked twice in 33 postseason games. Craig Biggio was intentionally walked twice in 40 postseason games. Jose Cruz was intentionally walked three times in the 1980 NLCS Game 3.

*Anthony Castrovince talked about Verlander and Cole carving up the Indians.

*Lance McCullers will be key for Hinch in how he uses Ryan Pressly. Hinch:
I think McCullers is key for a lot of reasons. His health and quality will help me use Pressly how I did in Game 1. I don't want to call him a backup plan, but having an additional arm I'm comfortable with in the latter third of the game allows me to deploy Pressly in so many different ways.

I like Hinch using "deploy" as though Pressly is a literal weapon.

In that article, Hector Rondon said he was preparing his arm (for what exactly, I'm not sure), causing him to miss his on-field introduction. Rondon:
I was doing something inside to prepare my arm. I know I'm not on this roster, but I was preparing my arm for the next round. I apologized to my teammates and A.J., too. I was out for the first pitch. I try to help my guys and support my guys, and be with them. 

On being left off the ALDS roster, Rondon admitted it hurt:
I only had a bad outing in September. I felt like I'd made the roster, but they made the decision, and I take it. I take it like a man.

He's probably thinking about September 17, when he allowed 4H/4ER and a walk in a 4-1 loss to Seattle. But the game prior and following was a three-game stretch where he allowed 8H/8ER, 3K:2BB. Tough to leave Rondon off because of three games in a 63-appearance season, but...

*Jose Altuve tweaked something in his leg on his dribbler up the 3B line that Josh Donaldson - whose trade was garbage, by the way - inexplicably picked up. George Springer "panicked." Jayson Stark notes how the Jose Altuve Effect is real.

*LOL Jon Heyman's "Inside Baseball" column this week doesn't even have an Astros section.

*David Price has made ten postseason starts. His teams are 0-10 in those starts. He has a career 5.28 ERA / 1.25 WHIP in the postseason. $217 million is a lot of money to spend for zero wins.

*A philosopher says that our addiction to stories keeps us from understanding history.

*Suge Knight's son says that Tupac is living in Malaysia.

*A Musical Selection: