Carlos Correa powered the Astros to an 8-2 win over the Red Sox on Friday, giving Houston a 2-0 lead in the five game series. He got things started early, drilling a two-run homer off starter Drew Pomeranz in the first inning. The young shortstop drove in two more runs with a double in the sixth frame. Outfielder George Springer laced a double, cracked a solo homer and scored twice. Jose Altuve followed up his three-homer outburst in Game 1 by delivering an RBI single and reaching base four times.
Dallas Keuchel earned the win for the Astros, allowing just one run in 5 2/3 innings while allowing three hits. He struck out seven batters against three walks. He wasn't very efficient with his 96 pitches and couldn't make it deep into the game, but it didn't matter as his teammates piled on the run support.
Drew Pomeranz started for the Red Sox and served up two homers on the way to allowing four runs in two-plus innings of work. The left-hander's velocity has been down in recent games, making his outlook questionable if Boston advances to the next round.
Jackie Bradley drove in the only two runs the Red Sox could muster in the ballgame. He smacked an RBI single off starter Dallas Keuchel in the second inning, then repeated the feat off closer Ken Giles in the ninth.
Mookie Betts left the game in the bottom of the eighth inning after aggravating a wrist injury he has been battling in recent weeks. He is expected to be able to play in Sunday's Game 3. Betts went 1-for-4 with a double on Friday before departing.
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Indians Mount a Comeback
Francisco Lindor launched a grand slam to propel the Indians to a 9-8 win over the Yankees in Game 2 of their five-game set. It took 13 innings and more than five hours to decide the outcome, which seemed unlikely as the Yankees took an early 8-3 lead on the strength of home runs by Gary Sanchez and Aaron Hicks. Indians' ace Corey Kluber was bombed for six runs in 2 2/3 innings to continue the recent trend of the league's best pitchers getting hammered in the playoffs.
After homering in the first game of the series, Jay Bruce went deep again today to tie the game in the eighth inning. Yan Gomes delivered a walk-off single that plated Austin Jackson with the game-winner in the bottom of the 13th.
Edwin Encarnacion had to leave the game after suffering what looked like a major ankle injury in the first inning. It seems unlikely he will be able to play for the rest of this series. If the Indians decide to replace him on the playoff roster he will be ineligible to return until the World Series.
The Nationals' Stephen Strasburg took a no-hitter into the sixth inning but ended up being outdueled by Kyle Hendricks of the Cubs. Strasburg punched out 10 hitters but was burned by two unearned runs in the sixth inning that sent him to an undeserved loss. Hendricks matched him pitch-for-pitch and inning-for-inning, earning the win by tossing seven shutout frames while allowing just a pair of harmless singles in the dominant outing.
Clayton Kershaw earned a win over the Diamondbacks despite surrendering four home runs in the first game of the NLDS. He allowed solo bombs to A.J. Pollock, J.D. Martinez, Ketel Marte and Jeff Mathis -- becoming the first Dodger pitcher to allow four homers in a postseason contest.
His mound opponent Taijuan Walker lasted just one inning in his start, allowing four runs and burning 48 pitches in the first frame. Zack Godley took over in the second frame and allowed three runs -- two earned -- in five innings of work.
Right Fielder J.D. Martinez went 3-for-4 in the ballgame and continued his home run barrage. He hit 45 longballs in 120 games and was on pace for a 60-homer season if he had played the full 162. Shortstop Ketel Marte had a pair of hits including a homer and scored twice.
Justin Turner cracked a three-run blast and also had a pair of RBI singles, tying a Dodger record with five RBI in a postseason game. Corey Seager drove in runs with a single and a triple. Yasiel Puig punched an RBI double and legged out a triple as well.
Game 2 of the series kicks off tomorrow with Rich Hill battling Robbie Ray. Hill has been dominant in the second half of the season and Ray has handled the Dodgers with ease this year, registering a 2.27 ERA in five starts.
Quick Hits: Brad Peacock is slated to start Game 3 against the Red Sox on Sunday. Charlie Morton will take the mound for the Astros if the series needs a Game 4 ... Xander Bogaerts went 0-for-5 with two strikeouts against the Astros on Friday and is hitless in the postseason ... Astros closer Ken Giles gave up two hits and a run while notching one strikeout in a non-save situation against the Red Sox ... Red Sox ace reliever Addison Reed gave up two runs on two hits and a walk against the Astros ... Michael Brantley replaced Encarnacion after the injury and went 0-for-5 with a pair of strikeouts. If Encarnacion is unable to return soon, Brantley may be pressed into full-time duty before fully recovering from his own ankle injury ... David Price threw 2 2/3 scoreless innings in relief and Red Sox manager John Farrell said the veteran left-hander may get a chance to start if the Red Sox advance in the playoffs ... Eduardo Nunez is not expected to recover from his knee injury in time to participate in the postseason even if the Red Sox make it to the World Series ... The Rangers may consider extending a qualifying offer to Andrew Cashner after he turned in a 3.40 ERA in 166 2/3 innings this year ... The Red Sox are considering starting their ace Chris Sale in Game 4 of the ALDS on short rest.