The Houston Astros started off their playoff run on Thursday afternoon with plenty of fireworks, rolling to a 6-1 win over the Chicago White Sox in game one of the ALDS thanks to a stellar performance from Lance McCullers Jr. and Yordan Alvarez.
How It Happened
The Astros got on the board in the bottom of the second with an RBI single from rookie Jake Meyers that scored Alvarez. After McCullers sat down the side in the top of the third, Alex Bregman increased Houston’s lead with a fielder’s choice that allowed Jose Altuve to reach home safely.
Alvarez made it a 3-0 contest later in the inning with a well-hit double to center field. The White Sox got a runner in scoring position in the fourth, but the Astros avoided giving up a run after Yasmani Grandal grounded out to Yuli Gurriel.
Michael Brantley then busted the contest wide open in the bottom frame with a two-run single that went through the gap in center field to go up 5-0.
Yordan Alvarez put the exclamation point on the contest for the Astros with a solo shot to center field, making it a 6-0 contest. The White Sox avoided the shutout when Jose Abreu hit a line drive towards right field to score Tim Anderson.
Big Number: 10
The Astros bats headed into the postseason had been largely feast or famine, but the offense came to play to open the postseason with six runs off of 10 hits. It may not be a big number compared to other games, but this is a good start for the postseason and they’re now one step closer to punching a ticket to the ALDS, so the team will probably sleep well knowing they got 10 hits in a blowout win.
Player of the Game: Lance McCullers
Lance McCullers was on another level on Thursday afternoon, throwing 6 2/3 innings of shutout baseball and allowing only four hits in the contest. Huge performance from the veteran to open the series and more importantly keep the bullpen fresh.