Astros Beat Rays 6-1 to Advance to ALCS Matchup With Yankees

Gerrit Cole pitched a masterful playoff game to help Houston knock off Tampa Bay

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Jose Altuve of the Houston Astros is congratulated by his teammate Carlos Correa. (Bob Levey/Getty)
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The Rays put up a fight, but in the end, the Houston Astros prevailed in their best-of-five division series and will move on to face the Yankees in the ALCS.

Needing a win at home to advance, the Astros sent Gerrit Cole to the hill and he pitched another masterful playoff game to help Houston knock off Tampa Bay 6-1. Staked to a 4-0 lead in the first inning, Cole pitched into the eighth inning, striking out 10 and allowing just two hits.

Thanks to Cole’s superb effort, the ALCS will feature the 107-win Astros against the 103-win Yankees in a matchup of the American League heavyweights.

“It’s the matchup that we wanted,” said Houston shortstop Carlos Correa. “It’s the matchup that everybody wants to watch. It’s must-see TV right there. So everybody is going to be tuning in. It’s going to be fun.”

This is the third year in a row the Astros have advanced to the ALCS and second time in three years the Yankees have made it. Houston beat New York in the 2017 ALCS in seven games and has won four of seven meetings this season.

“This is two incredible powerhouse teams,” said Houston ace Justin Verlander. “We’ll find ourselves in the middle of the ring here in a couple of days and we’ll be going at it.”

Game 1 of the ALCS is Saturday night in Houston.

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