Yankees Outlast Astros, Force Game 6 in Houston

New York Yankees starting pitcher James Paxton. Photo by Canadian Press/Shutterstock (10414035d)

For only the second time this postseason, a Yankees starter has gone 6 innings or more. James Paxton let up 1 run in 6 innings of hard-earned work, throwing 112 pitches, the most by any Yankees starter all season.

After the Astros took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first on a passed ball and a wild pitch silencing the Yankee Stadium crowd, New York responded with 4 runs in the bottom half off of Verlander. He struggled to keep his fastball down in the zone, and the Yankees took advantage by hitting 2 home runs, including a leadoff shot by DJ LeMaiheu.

Verlander settled down after the 4 run first, throwing 7 innings and striking out 9, but the damage was done, and the final score stayed 4-1. The Astros only used one reliever, so their bullpen will be well rested for what will probably be a battle of the bullpens in Game 6.

Tommy Kahnle, Zach Britton, and Aroldis Chapman combined for three shutout innings after taking over for Paxton in the 7th, a big turnaround from the bullpen meltdown in Game 4.

Shmuel grew up in Pittsburgh during the rough times of the Pirate's streak of 20 losing seasons. In between baseball, football, and going to school, his passion is finding the most interesting weekend hikes and getaways.