What a roller-coaster of emotions its been for A.J. Hinch and the Houston Astros. From knocking off the Boston Red Sox with relative ease, feeling in control early in the series with the New York Yankees, to feeling the series was slipping away in the Bronx. However, when the dust settled they came out the other side as the American League Champions and ticket punched to Los Angeles to meet the Dodgers in the World Series. Game One is set for 7:09pm first pitch.

This will be the first time the Astros have won the American League Pennant. The Last time the Stros have won a Pennant was in 2005 when they won the National League Pennant and lost to the Chicao White Sox in the World Series.

Tonight's Game One match-up will pit two 29 year old lefties in their prime against each other, Dallas Keuchel and Clayton Kershaw. Which of these lefties has the edge?

Lets look at the tale of the tape:

Dallas Keuchel 2017

  • On the road:
  • 8-2, 3.53 ERA, 11 HR allowed, 66 strikeouts, 26 walks, .245 BA, .311 OBP
  • Against Lefties:
  • .145 BA, .190 OBP
  • Against Righties:
  • .232 BA, .307 OBP

There is no question that Keuchel is a special pitcher but his numbers suggest he's more mortal on the road (see full split of stats here). He's especially tough on left handed hitters but the thing about this Dodgers team is that they have a ton of lineup depth. The way Dave Roberts manipulates his line-ups is unique because at a lot of positions he doesn't have one set starter, he plays the match-ups to his favor. For example, instead of having to play left handed hitters Chase Utley and Curtis Granderson he can play his righties Logan Forsythe and Kiki Hernandez. In addition, the Dodgers hit lefties the third best among any team in the majors this season. Here's one more nugget for you, this season batters who hit second in the lineup against him are having a good amount of success. In fact, they're hitting better than any other position in the batting order at .281 and a .359 OBP. Justin Turner has been hitting second.... Be alert Dallas, Turner won't be afraid to be in a attack mode.

Clayton Kershaw 2017

  • At Home:
  • 9-2, 2.58 ERA, 14 HR allowed, 113 strikeouts, 15 walks, .206 BA, .239 OBP
  • Against Lefties:
  • .248 BA, .275 OBP
  • Against Righties:
  • .203 BA, .239 OBP

Clayton Kershaw is an absolute stud, one of, if not the best pitcher of this generation. He's an consistent CY Young Award candidate year in and year out, there's really not much more you can say about him. However, he has had a propensity to struggle a little in the postseason and we've never seen him on the biggest of stages before, the World Series. This will be uncharted waters for the ace of Hollywood's staff but the waters that are charted look like this: In 21 postseason appearances he's seemed to devolve to a mere mortal with a 6-7 record, a 4.40 ERA, 16 HR allowed, 122 strikeouts, and 32 walks. If the Astros offense wants to hang their hat on something regarding Kershaw it very well might be his pedestrian postseason stats.

Regardless, this series and specifically game one should be extremely entertaining to watch play itself out.


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