Because of the heroics of shortstop Carlos Correa, who hit a walk-off home run Thursday, the Astros constrained a Game 6 of the American League Championship Series against the Rays. The two teams’ starters are set for that affair on Friday. The Astros will use left-hander Framber Valdez, per manager Dusty Baker (through Brian McTaggart of MLB.com), while the Rays will go to individual southpaw Blake Snell, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times tweets.
This will be the third consecutive backs-against-the-wall game for the Astros, who fell behind 3-0 in the series yet have would not disappear unobtrusively. They’ve dominated two successive matches by a 4-3 score and will presently depend on the 26-year-old Valdez to prop their season up. He was an irreplaceable part of their Justin Verlander-less rotation during the regular season, when he threw 70 2/3 innings of 3.57 ERA/2.85 FIP ball with 9.68 K/9, 2.04 BB/9 and a 60 percent groundball rate. Valdez has included another 18 frames in the postseason and permitted only four acquired runs. The Rays did, nonetheless, improve of him in Game 1 of the ALCS with a 2-1 triumph.
Snell was in charge for the Rays in the series’ first game, and the previous AL Cy Young winner surrendered one run in five innings. He has commonly been great in these playoffs, having given up five ER in 15 2/3 frames. Prior to that, Snell had another powerful regular season with 50 innings of 3.24 ERA/4.35 FIP pitching with 11.34 K/9, 3.24 BB/9 and a 49.2 percent GB rate. The 27-year-old presently gets an opportunity to pitch Tampa Bay into the World Series for the first time since 2008.