LEADING OFF: Altuve, shaky Astros in 2-0 hole vs Rays
A look at what's happening around the majors today:
Jose Altuve and the Houston Astros face a 2-0 hole against Tampa Bay in the AL Championship Series and hardly looked like a club that has won two of their last three AL pennants. Altuve made two throwing errors from second base during a 2-4 loss in Game 2, including a short-hop throw that preceded a triple homer from Manuel Margot.
After the second mistake - both from the flat right field as part of the infield shifts - Altuve and shortstop Carlos Correa began swapping positions in the formation.
"They just hope he doesn't get the Yips because they always come in bundles," said manager Dusty Baker, who hugged Altuve in the dugout after the second mistake. “Everything comes in bundles. I just told him to rinse it. This guy was great for us. You have to rinse it and move on or it will multiply. I am sure he will. "
The Astros also had a lousy run with runners on the base. You're 3 to 16 in the series with men in goal position, including Alex Bregman's base-laden strikeout at the end of Game 2.
Of course, Ray's pitchers have something to do with it. According to MLB.com, the Tampa Bay Aides stranded each of the first 17 runners they inherited in those playoffs and picked the Cardinals for the longest such streak at the start of a postseason in 2006.
Ray's left-hander Ryan Yarbrough will start Game 3, giving towering right-winger Tyler Glasnow an extra day to recover after taking a two-day break in Game 5 of the AL Division Series against the Yankees. Houston will turn to right-handed Jose Urquidy.
THE CHILD AND THE ACE
Rookie Ian Anderson made an impressive start to his first postseason, trying to take Atlanta 2-0 lead in the NL Championship Series when he took on Dodgers star Clayton Kershaw.
After just six regular season starts, 22-year-old Anderson has won both playoff games, allowing only five hits and scoring 17 in 11 2/3 goalless innings. Kershaw had mixed results during his illustrious career in October, but the three-time Cy Young Award winner is 2-0 with an ERA of 1.93 in two playoff starts this year - including a 13-goal gem in the first round against Milwaukee. He is 11-11 with an all-time 4.23 ERA in the postseason.
Both pitchers will be tested in the new Texas Rangers stadium: The Dodgers and Braves finished 1st to 2nd in the majors in runs (349-348) and homers (118-103) this year.
The Braves won the opener 5-1 with a ninth run that included a tiebreaking homer from Austin Riley and a split shot from Ozzie Albies.
Atlanta could be minus outfielder Adam Duvall, who left the NLCS first game on Monday night after injuring himself on the left.
"I don't expect the result to be good. He popped it," said manager Brian Snitker.
Cristian Pache, a 21-year-old rookie who has played four major league games this season, took over for Duvall.
After a 12-year playoff drought, the Chicago White Sox are looking for a new manager. Rick Renteria and the team agreed to part ways after a disappointing end to a breakout season that saw the White Sox make the playoffs for the first time since 2008.
The club announced on Monday that Renteria will not be returning after leading the White Sox to a record of 35-25 in its pandemic-shortened fourth season. Chicago halted a string of seven straight defeats before knocking out the playoffs 2-1 in Oakland's best-of-three series.
"We didn't want to end it that way," said General Manager Rick Hahn. “We wanted Ricky to lead us to championships. ... It became clear that it was time to change something. "
Don Cooper, who had been a coach since July 2002, was also fired. He had spent more than three decades with the organization.
Hahn said Renteria's replacement will likely come from outside the White Sox. He said he would like someone to work for a championship organization, although experience of dealing with the major league is not essential.
Padres outfielder Tommy Pham is recovering after being stabbed in the back on Sunday night, authorities said. Pham was stabbed to death shortly after 10:30 p.m. Outside the Pacers Showgirls International Gentlemen's Club, Police Lieutenant Shawn Takeuchi told the San Diego Union-Tribune.
Pham apparently didn't know the attackers who remained at large, he said.
"While it has been a very traumatic and insightful experience for me, I am on the recovery path and know that I will be back to my off-season training routine in no time," Pham said in a statement released by the team.
Pham hit .211 in 31 games that year with three home runs, 12 RBIs and six stolen bases, then faced .375 (9 for 24) in six postseason games before the Los Angeles Dodgers beat San Diego on Thursday was eliminated.
MLB announced that the order for the amateur draft for next year will be in retained earnings as usual. According to the agreement between MLB and the Players' Association of March 26, MLB had the right to change the order as the regular season included fewer than 81 games per team.
Pittsburgh will be number 1 for the fifth time after picking Jeff King (1986), Kris Benson (1996), Bryan Bullington (2002) and Gerrit Cole (2011). Texas comes in second, followed by Detroit, Boston and Baltimore.
The average time of a nine-inning game quickened during the Division Series, but not my time. The 15 Division Series game lasted an average of 3 hours, 28 minutes and 8 seconds, Major League Baseball said Monday. That was from 3:29:18 in the wildcard round. MLB's postseason average for the first two rounds was 3:28:43, down from a record of 3:07:46 in the regular season.
More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
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