Yankees vs Astros preview: Can Bronx Bombers build on opening sweep, humble Astros again?

Yankees vs Astros series to commence on 7th May, 2024.
Esteban Quiñones
Tuesday May 7, 2024

Table of Contents

Juan Soto and the New York Yankees (23-13) are preparing to face Jose Altuve and the Houston Astros (12-22) in a three-game series at Yankee Stadium starting Tuesday night. Despite leading the season series 4-0, the Yankees will need to be cautious against an Astros team eager to climb out of their early struggles and fight their way back into the AL playoff race.

Yankees vs Houston head-to-head

  • Games played: 79
  • Won by Yankees: 47
  • Lost by Yankees: 32
  • Yankees Win-Loss %: .595
  • Runs scored by Yankees: 359
  • Runs allowed by Yankees: 324
  • Yankees home record: 23-17
  • Yankees away record (in Houston): 24-15

Yankees latest news

The Yankees have been favorites in seven of their last ten games and capitalized on this opportunity, winning five times and surpassing expected total runs in half of their last ten games. Despite this success, defensive struggles have led to a mixed 5-5 record against the spread.

Juan Soto remains a standout performer, boasting a .316 batting average, eight home runs, and 28 RBIs. His consistent performance at the plate ranks him 10th in home runs across the MLB and fourth in RBIs. Over his last five games, Soto has maintained a .263 average, demonstrating his ability to adapt and deliver when it matters most.

Aaron Judge, despite a relatively low batting average of .220, has still proven productive with seven home runs and 26 walks. Over his last five games, Judge has hit .313 with two doubles and a home run. His presence provides much-needed stability to the lineup.

Aaron Judge was ejected during the Yankees' 5-3 win against the Detroit Tigers on May 4, 2024.
NY POST

Alex Verdugo has been steady, maintaining a .261 average, six doubles, and four home runs. Though not leading in home runs or RBIs, his consistent presence at the plate offers valuable support. Anthony Volpe also continues to impress, contributing five doubles, a triple, and three home runs while batting .252.

Injuries continue to challenge the Yankees’ pitching staff and lineup. Gerrit Cole (elbow), Jonathan Loaisiga (elbow), and Tommy Kahnle (shoulder) are just some of the critical absences, requiring younger and less-experienced players to step up.

Astros latest news

The Astros have struggled to close out tight games, winning only four of their last ten matchups. Despite being favored in several games, only three have surpassed the expected run total, revealing their inconsistency.

Kyle Tucker leads Houston’s offensive charge with nine home runs and 23 RBIs. His consistency places him fifth in MLB home runs. Jose Altuve, batting .343, is the team’s most reliable hitter. Yordan Alvarez (.250) and Jeremy Pena (.323) round out a lineup that could be potent if everything clicks.

However, the highly touted bullpen trio of Bryan Abreu, Ryan Pressly, and Josh Hader has underperformed, combining for eight blown saves in 18 games. Hader, in particular, has a 6.14 ERA over 15 appearances, underperforming his usually reliable standards.

Injuries have added to their woes, with key players like Cristian Javier (neck), Jose Urquidy (forearm), and Lance McCullers Jr. (elbow) sidelined. This leaves Houston thin on reliable starters and requires their bullpen to pick up the slack.

Alex Bregman and Yordan Alvarez have had slow starts, both hitting well below their career averages. Bregman is struggling with a career-low OPS of .554, while Alvarez has fallen from a hot start to a .766 OPS. Both need to elevate their performances to help Tucker and others if the Astros are to reverse their recent slide.

Yankees vs Astros game 1: May 7th, 7:05 PM ET

  • Luis Gill (2-1, 3.19 ERA) vs. Justin Verlander (1-0, 2.08 ERA): Verlander, coming off a strong seven-inning outing, will look to contain the Yankees. Luis Gill, Luis Gil has taken risks by throwing a low percentage of first-pitch strikes, leading to a high walk rate. However, his salvation has been limiting opposing hitters to a .224 batting average on balls in play.
Luis Gill is in action during the Yankees vs. Rays game at Yankee Stadium on April 21, 2024.
AP

Yankees vs Astros game 2: May 8th, 7:05 PM ET

  • Carlos Rodon (2-2, 3.68 ERA) vs. Spencer Arrighetti (0-3, 8.27 ERA): Carlos Rodon aims to steady the Yankees, while Arrighetti needs to find better control to avoid compounding his team’s pitching struggles.

Yankees vs Astros game 3: May 9th, 5:05 PM ET

  • Ronel Blanco (3-0, 2.09 ERA) vs. Marcus Stroman (2-1, 3.41 ERA): Blanco, one of Houston’s most dependable starters, will face Marcus Stroman in what could be a pivotal game in the series.

The Yankees may lead the season series 4-0, but they can’t take the Astros lightly.

Houston’s bullpen has struggled to hold leads, and the Yankees must keep their offensive momentum going against the Astros’ inconsistent pitching. This series could test both teams’ ability to execute under pressure and reveal who is better prepared for the challenging stretch ahead. What do you think? Leave your comment below!

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