With the Baltimore Orioles role in the American League East, the fans and the team are forced to face the New York Yankees 19 times each season.
And last night, the Baltimore Orioles division foe fell to the Houston Astros in the final game of the ALCS.
Now, the Yankees get to go home with the rest of the AL East as the Astro and Los Angeles Dodgers face off in the 2017 World Series.
The 2017 Yankees were a team loaded with talent and they often dominated the Orioles this season. Unfortunately, the Orioles lost more games than they won against the Baby Bombers. In the 19 games, the Orioles only won 7 of them.
Lots of strikeouts for the Baby Bomber
Aaron Judge, who will most likely be named Rookie of the Year over Trey Mancini, set a record for the most strikeouts in post-season play. Check out our argument for Mancini as ROTY. According to a Tweet from Ryan Field with ABC, Judge ended the post-season with 27 strikeouts.
This had to feel good for Birdland fans, as the big right-handed power hitter had eight home runs against Orioles pitching. In the regular season, he did the most damage to Kevin Gausman hitting three home runs and a double and ending the season with a .500 average against him. However, Gausman did strike him out 5 times in their 12 meetings.
Sanchez showed weaknesses
Along with playoff pitchers getting the best of Judge, the Astros offense had some serious fun running on Gary Sanchez. In 2017, Sanchez hit an average of .366 against the Orioles and had his best games against Gausman, Wade Miley, and Chris Tillman. He had four home runs, 12 RBIs, and 14 strikeouts. Sanchez was clutch batter throughout the regular season, but the Astros held him to a .192 batting average and one home run. Surprisingly, he struck out nine times against Astros pitching.
While Sanchez is money at the plate, his skills behind the dish are less than stellar. He had 16 pass balls in the regular season – which led the league. He also led the league in errors as a catcher. His inability to catch a ball in a relay to make a tag was on full display as the Astros scored several runs trusting that he wouldn’t be able to make plays at the plate.
Home field advantage
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The Yankees were dominant at home, which is something that the Orioles know all too well. At Yankee Stadium, the Orioles won two of the ten games played there. At Camden Yards, the Orioles won five of nine. The O’s won two of the three-game series that were played in Baltimore. It was clear that the home field advantage certainly helped the Yankees.
Not only did the Astros get to the best hitters on team, but they also quieted the Yankees pitching staff. Luis Severino was held to minimal innings against the Indians and the Astros. He ended up with a 5.63 ERA in the postseason. This was nice to see after he held the O’s to a sad .189 average against him. Only Manny Machado and Trey Mancini did well against him in the regular season.
It was a surprise that the Yankees made it as far as they did in the post-season. And, now that they are finished, it will be nice to not have to see them for a few months.