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Friday, June 5, 2020

Articles tagged: Jose Altuve

20 standout players of the MLB playoffs

Yasiel Puig tongue

The Major League Baseball postseason always produces superstars. Some of those who emerge are expected, while some are unlikely players who go from anonymity to household name overnight. That can happen thanks to a hot streak at the right time, a dramatic home run, a surprisingly great pitching performance, or some sterling defensive play.

Here is a list of 20 players who have been the standout players so far during the 2017 MLB playoffs.

Jose Altuve, 2B, Astros

The potential AL MVP had a great regular season, and that has carried over into the postseason. Altuve, for as well-known and well-respected as he is across baseball, has never really had that signature moment or stretch of performances to really establish himself as a major star. In his only previous playoff series — the 2015 ALDS against Kansas City — he went just 3-for-22.

This year, he promptly opened his postseason with a three-homer game, and he hasn’t looked back since. He hit an astonishing .533 against Boston, and has only slightly cooled in the ALCS, hitting a mere .357. He’s a superstar now, and everyone is taking notice.

Yasiel Puig, OF Dodgers

For much of his career, Puig has been better known for bat flips, off-field antics, and on-field mental errors than for star power on the field. Sure, he has always had spectacular plays in him, but it would be fair to say he had never put it all together. Not anymore.

Puig is having an absolutely dominant postseason, hitting .429 and driving in six runs in Los Angeles’s first six games. It’s too soon to say that he’s found something permanently — Puig has had hot stretches before — but if this keeps up, he’ll evolve into a superstar he once looked destined to become.


‘Entourage’ actor says he is going as Jose Altuve for Halloween

Jose Altuve

A worthy doppelgänger has emerged for Houston Astros infielder Jose Altuve.

Actor Jerry Ferrara, best known for his role in the HBO TV series “Entourage,” tweeted on Monday that he will be going as Altuve for Halloween, noting his resemblance to the five-time All-Star.

October is indeed a great time to be Altuve, who is hitting .481 with three home runs and four RBIs in seven games for the Astros this postseason. As for Ferrara, who has dabbled into the world of sports before, he can probably start rehearsing his victory speech for the Halloween costume contest already.

Astros top Yankees 2-1, take 1-0 ALCS lead

The Houston Astros jumped out to a 1-0 series lead over the New York Yankees with a 2-1 win in the series opener in Houston Friday night.

It was a pitchers’ duel early on, with New York’s Masahiro Tanaka and Houston’s Dallas Keuchel both stymying batters. Keuchel amassed six strikeouts in his first four innings of work, and Tanaka had a no-hitter through three.

In the fourth inning, Houston’s offense showed signs of life and the Astros got on the board. Carlos Correa drove home Jose Altuve, and Yuli Gurriel drove home Correa. Those would prove to be the only runs Houston would need.

The Yankees came close to scoring in the following frame. Aaron Judge nailed a line drive to left field, and it looked like Greg Bird would score from second. However, Houston leftfielder Marwin Gonzalez showed off his canon and gunned Bird out at the plate.

Ken Giles, who is now 35/39 on save opportunities this year, closed out the game. Bird drilled a solo shot to right field to put the Yankees on the board with two outs in the ninth inning, but Giles struck out Jacoby Ellsbury to end the game.

Keuchel got the win, while Tanaka, who was marvelous in defeat and only gave up four hits in six innings of work, took the loss.

Game 2 will take place Saturday at 4:30 p.m. EST at Houston’s Minute Maid Park. Luis Severino and Justin Verlander are the expected starting pitchers. The game will air on Fox; it is the lone game in this series that will not appear on FS1.

Correa, Gurriel give Astros first lead of ALCS in pitchers’ duel

Carlos Correa

The American League Championship Series was a pitcher’s duel early on. In the first three innings, New York’s Masahiro Tanaka didn’t allow a hit, and Houston’s Dallas Keuchel amassed five strikeouts.

In the fourth, however, the Astros became the first team to get on the board in the series.

Jose Altuve singled, then stole second base, narrowly beating the throw. Then, with the speedy Altuve in scoring position, Carlos Correa singled on a line drive to left field. Correa brought Altuve home, putting Houston up 1-0.

Tanaka retired the next batter he faced, Marwin Gonzalez, but Yuli Gurriel singled, and Correa, who advanced on Gonzalez’s groundout, scored from second.

Heading into the fifth inning, Houston had a 2-0 lead.

Jose Altuve dismisses MVP talk after three-homer game

Jose Altuve

Jose Altuve put his mark on the postseason with a three-homer game in Game 1 of the ALDS on Thursday. But the Houston Astros second baseman insists his big game was more about helping his team than proving he deserves to be named AL MVP.

Altuve was asked after the 8-2 win over the Red Sox whether his big game was a statement about winning AL MVP.

“I don’t know about the MVP and all the stuff,” Altuve said in response to MLB Network’s Jon Morosi. “All I know right now is I want to win. It’s a little different when you hit a homer in a playoff game, and the regular season, because now you have to win — it’s a five-game series.”

The game goes down as one of the most memorable of Altuve’s career in what has been an outstanding season. The game also marked the first three-homer game in the postseason since Pablo Sandoval in 2012.

Here is video of all three.

Which was your favorite?

Jose Altuve crushes three home runs in ALDS Game 1

Jose Altuve

Babe Ruth. Reggie Jackson. George Brett. Albert Pujols. Adrian Beltre. Pablo Sandoval. Adam Kennedy. Bob Robertson. Jose Altuve.

Those are all the players who will forever live in lore amongst their fan base for putting together incredibly memorable performances in the postseason by clubbing three home runs in the same game.

The tiny Houston Astros second baseman joined elite company by blasting three out of the park in Game 1 of the ALDS on Thursday against the Boston Red Sox. All three of his bombs were of the solo variety and went to left or left center.

The first two blasts came off Chris Sale, and the third was hit off Austin Maddox, which led to a curtain call. His first homer was part of a back-to-back with No. 2 hitter Alex Bregman.

The homer barrage in Game 1 should quell doubters who don’t think he deserves AL MVP.

10 Most deserving MLB MVP candidates

Giancarlo Stanton

Few awards in sports spark more arguments than Most Valuable Player. What is the definition of “valuable?” Can a pitcher win it? Do you have to lead your team to the playoffs to be serious considered? How much do defense, baserunning, and other variables matter when it comes to baseball. There’s still no good answer to these questions — it’s all in the eye of the beholder, or in this case, the voter.

Even though we don’t know whom the voters will favor, we can predict which players will be serious candidates to win the award in both the American and National League. Here are five players from each who have a chance of taking home the awards come season’s end.

American League

5) Jonathan Schoop, Orioles

Schoop isn’t getting a lot of publicity right now, but he’ll probably get some votes in the AL MVP race. The Orioles second baseman has posted a very strong season, hitting over .300 with 31 home runs and 102 RBIs. He’s been Baltimore’s best player, and an integral part of pulling them back into the wild-card race. If Baltimore can make the playoffs, Schoop may get even more attention.

4) Aaron Judge, Yankees