New York Yankees vs. Houston Astros: Odds, Analysis, MLB Betting Pick

Yankees third baseman Todd Frazier reacts after hitting

Yankees third baseman Todd Frazier reacts after hitting

"The Yankees are known for coming back".

He knows the history. They also will hand a series lead to ace Justin Verlander in Game 2.

Rather than shrug it off as meaningless, Keuchel acknowledges the significance of that moment and the juice of facing a team so accustomed to baseball's October spotlight.

"I have been trying to hit it the other way so it felt good", said Bellinger.

While it's easy to look at the Astros' 101 wins and the Yankees' 92 and pick Houston as the clear favorite, it's certainly not all that cut and dry.

The Astros have completed 55 seasons without a World Series title (since their inception in 1962), making it the third-longest drought in the majors.

Both Bregman and Giles had to work very hard to get to where they are today, but they believe that even though they are just two of the three New Mexico-bred players in the Major League Baseball, more will come.

Tanaka had an inconsistent September that included two starts where he gave up seven earned runs and was capped by one where he struck out 15 in seven scoreless innings before he pitched the Yankees to a 1-0 win in Game 3 against the Indians.

"I don't think anyone who goes through a season has a flawless season", Judge said.

"His stuff was great the other day, he's had some really big starts, his last two starts have been outstanding", manager Joe Girardi said. Not only is Keuchel 3-1 with a 2.28 ERA over his past four starts, including a win over Boston in Game 2, but he is also arguably the most prolific Yankee-slayer among starting pitchers in modern times. "And to be honest with you, when Dallas is right, he's confident against anybody". "And just because it's the Yankees, you get a little bit more amped and jittery". "He knows he can get out anybody in the league".

The Astros are favored to win their first pennant since 2005 because they are the better team in this matchup.

It's debatable how much head-to-head regular-season results actually matter as an indicator of postseason results, but the Astros fared much better against the Yankees than they did the Indians.

"They've got high-end velocity", Hinch said. "We got to keep going and stay sharp". The guys at the bottom (of the order) can hurt you as well. In an era in which the strikeout is king, Keuchel is a throwback - a sinkerball specialist whose ground-ball rate of 66.8 percent was by far the highest in the game this season among pitchers with at least 100 innings pitched.

The decisive Game 5 is Wednesday in Cleveland, where the Indians will be looking to snap a five-game losing streak in elimination games. They beat the Yankees five out of the seven times they played this year.

The Yankees defeating Houston in the ALCS would be an upset.

The Yankees will probably make Matt Holliday the team's DH in Game 1 against Keuchel.

"Dallas Keuchel has been remarkable as an Astro, he's been remarkable in my three years here", Hinch said. "They're aggressive on the base paths, so you have to control that".

"It's a club that scores a lot of runs but doesn't swing and miss very much". Judge can be incredibly hot, but right now he is incredibly cold. After striking out in 16 of his 20 at-bats in the ALDS against Cleveland.

Verlander's performance afforded the bullpen a five-run edge entering the seventh, which proved to be all the breathing room the home team needed.

"For people to say he was exposed or what not, I don't believe in that", Kuechel said.

And assuming Astros second baseman Jose Altuve and Yankees right fielder Aaron Judge are the top two finishers in the AL MVP race, it will mark the fourth ALCS in the past 25 years to feature both the MVP and runner-up.