Houston police chief proposes friendly bet to NYC chief if Astros win

Thomas B. Shea-USA TODAY Sports

Thomas B. Shea-USA TODAY Sports

Astros fans waiting on last-minute deals to secure tickets for the American League Championship Series may have waited a day too long.

The Houston Astros will host the New York Yankees in Game 1 of the American League Championship Series on Friday. That may be NY and thus the bad news for the Astros.

The starting pitching in this series tilts the Astros' way with the addition of the veteran Verlander, although when the Yankees' pitchers at are their best it makes for a very formidable group.

That trip to the postseason was the start of the Astros' evolution into a contender. "Going all the way, Houston will not have liftoff".

Acevedo tweeted at New York City police Commissioner James O'Neill, congratulating the Yankees on their division win.

Girardi said of his team, "They picked me up". The Yankees strengthened their pitching staff by acquiring Sonny Gray, David Robertson and Tommy Kahnle.

"Oh yeah", Judge said when asked if he'd be able to turn the page going into facing the Astros. Pictured: Didi Gregorius celebrates as he runs the bases after hitting a solo home run against the Cleveland Indians in Game 5 of the American League Divisional Series at Progressive Field on October 11, 2017 in Cleveland.

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The betting odds lean toward Houston, who has home-field advantage. The Astros have homefield advantage against the Yankees.

The Astros had the AL's best offense in the regular season. NY has been propelled by the home run machine, rookie Aaron Judge. If the playoffs factored into the voting, it would be no contest.

Houston's top hitters have come to play in the postseason. Correa hit two homers against Boston, while Yuli Gurriel totaled 12 bases in 17 at-bats.

In terms of starting pitching, the Astros also seem to have the edge. Houston finished just a shade behind NY with a 4.03 ERA from their rotation, though Verlander was only with the team for a month. At this point, it may come down to matchups with the Yankees.

Relief pitching is an area the Yankees excelled in this season, as they finished third in the league with a bullpen ERA of 3.34. Houston is a -180 favorite to win Game 1 and NY is a +155 underdog.

Houston Astros fans cheer before Game 4 of the ALDS against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park on Monday, Oct. 9, 2017, in Boston. Tanaka has been outstanding in his last couple starts and Severino rebounded from a round AL Wild Card outing to slow down Cleveland in Game 3 of the ALCS. The Yankees can wear down starters and get into the bullpen like no other team.

Right-hander Justin Verlander has looked rejuvenated since the Astros acquired the 34-year-old in a trade from the Detroit Tigers on August 31. They can re-set their rotation without throwing either Keuchel or Verlander on short rest. He gave up one earned run on three hits with seven strikeouts and three walks over 5 2/3 innings during a 8-2 win over Boston in Game 1 of the ALDS. He got the last six outs for the save Wednesday. For Houston, it is the relentless, energetic 5-6 Jose Altuve; for the Bronx Bombers, it's the towering power of 6-7 Aaron Judge. Ken Giles and Luke Gregerson are good pitchers, as are Joe Musgrove and Lance McCullers, Jr., but they're not quite up to the level of performance that NY can expect every night. If Judge comes out of his slump, the Yankees will be even more unsafe.

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