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Yankees-Astros ALCS Game 7: In Real Life

October 21, 2017

The Astros defeated the Yankees, 4-0, in Game 7 of the American League Championship Series presented by Camping World on Saturday night in Houston to advance to face the Dodgers in the World Series presented by YouTube TV, with Game 1 slated for Tuesday (8 p.m. ET/FOX).• World Series Gm

The Astros defeated the Yankees, 4-0, in Game 7 of the American League Championship Series presented by Camping World on Saturday night in Houston to advance to face the Dodgers in the World Series presented by YouTube TV, with Game 1 slated for Tuesday (8 p.m. ET/FOX).
World Series Gm 1: Tues., 7:30 p.m. ET air time | 8 ET game time on FOX
MLB.com was on the scene at Minute Maid Park.
11:03 p.m. ET: Lance leading the way for Houston
Lance McCullers, with his Astros leading the Yankees, 4-0, and six outs from an American League pennant, walked Todd Frazier on four pitches to open the eighth inning. He then threw ball one to Chase Headley before a visit to the mound. But the 24-year-old right-hander turned things around, throwing seven straight knuckle-curveballs to Headley to get the strikeout. He then got Brett Gardner to pop out and struck out Aaron Judge on three pitches. Every pitch McCullers threw after the Frazier at-bat was a knuckle-curve.

10:30 p.m. ET: Springer robs Bird ... and Gonzalez?
Greg Bird hit a fly ball deep to left-center field to open the seventh inning, and Astros center fielder George Springer sprinted over to make a leaping catch in front of the fence -- right over the top of left fielder Marwin Gonzalez -- taking away a potential extra-base hit. Lance McCullers Jr. continued his relief effort, getting the Astros to within six outs of their second pennant in franchise history (National League pennant in 2005).

9:51 p.m. ET: Altuve continues blistering postseason
Jose Altuve drove a high changeup from Yankees reliever Tommy Kahnle over the wall in right field to extend the Astros' lead to 2-0 in the bottom of the fifth inning. It was Altuve's second homer in as many nights, and fifth this postseason (he hit three in ALDS Game 1 against the Red Sox). Altuve is now batting .410 (16-for-39) this postseason. Per Statcast™, the homer left the bat with an exit velocity of 99.7 mph, and a projected distance of 364 feet. Brian McCann added a two-run double to chase Kahnle from the game and extend the lead to 4-0. Before Friday's ALCS Game 6, in which McCann had two hits, including an RBI double, he had been 2-for-43 in the postseason dating back to 2013. He's 3-for-5 with two walks and three RBIs in the last two games.

9:40 p.m. ET: Bregman nails Bird, backs Morton
Third baseman Alex Bregman came up with a huge play with runners at the corners and one out in the fifth. With the Astros leading, 1-0, Todd Frazier chopped a ball slowly toward third, and Bregman gloved it and threw it home while on the run, nabbing Greg Bird at the plate. The ball was thrown in the right spot for catcher Brian McCann to catch and apply the tag almost instantaneously, preserving Houston's lead. Charlie Morton has pitched five scoreless innings, holding the Yankees to two hits and fanning five.

9:19 p.m. ET: Evan Almighty! Gattis blast breaks deadlock
The Astros jumped out in front first in the fourth inning on Evan Gattis' solo home run to left-center field against Carsten Sabathia. Gattis' shot left the bat at 106.2 mph, per Statcast™, with a projected distance of 405 feet. It was Gattis' first career postseason home run and first hit of the ALCS in eight at-bats. It was also the first home run by any designated hitter in the 2017 postseason.

9:15 p.m. ET: CC escapes again, but Morton matches
CC Sabathia continues to work in and out of trouble, stranding two more Astros runners on base in the third inning. The Astros hit two balls at over 100 mph exit velocity, per Statcast™, against the veteran left-hander in that inning: George Springer's 111.3-mph groundout and Alex Bregman's 100.0 mph-single. Sabathia walked Jose Altuve after the Bregman single, but he got a pair of ground balls for forceouts to escape another jam. He's stranded five Astros on the basepaths so far. Meanwhile, Charlie Morton continued his uber-efficient outing, needing only 36 pitches through the first four scoreless frames. The right-hander has allowed just one hit and struck out four.

8:43 p.m. ET: CC extends Reddick's skid
With runners at first and second and two out in the second, Josh Reddick came to the plate with a chance to put the Astros on the board first, but CC Sabathia got him to pop out to shallow right field, resulting in an 0-for-22 skid for Reddick this postseason. That tied the all-time record for most hitless at-bats to begin a postseason (also Dal Maxville for the Cardinals in the 1968 World Series).

8:32 p.m. ET: Judge rises to deny Yuli
Aaron Judge made a spectacular leaping catch in right field, slamming into the wall while snagging a sizzling line drive -- and potential home run -- off the bat of Yuli Gurriel. Gurriel drove the third pitch of the second inning from CC Sabathia, but Judge held onto the ball despite hitting the wall and falling onto the warning track. The ball came off the bat at 99 mph and traveled a projected 342 feet, according to Statcast™.

8:21 p.m. ET: Starters sharp as Minute Maid erupts
Astros starter Charlie Morton looked sharp in the first inning, setting down the Yankees in order on just 10 pitches. Seven of those were strikes, including a nasty curveball to strike out Didi Gregorius and end the top of the first. Morton's counterpart, CC Sabathia, turned in a scoreless opening frame as well, working around a leadoff single from George Springer. Sabathia induced three consecutive ground balls, stranding Springer at second.

8:10 p.m. ET: Play ball!
Who better to launch Game 7 of the ALCS than The Nature Boy, Ric Flair? He has a special message for Houston.

7:30 p.m. ET: Fan-tastic hat

7:10 p.m. ET: Scenes from BP
Carlos Correa, Jose Altuve and Alex Bregman get their work in ahead of Game 7.

7:07 p.m. ET: Outdoor life
Texas Avenue outside Minute Maid Park is bustling as fans gear up for Game 7.

7:01 p.m. ET: Kraken crackin' homers
Gary Sanchez's power stroke is evidently dialed in during batting practice.

6:31 p.m. ET: All eyes on Aaron
Aaron Judge returns to the dugout to grab his bat for BP. Listening to the fans calling his name and seeing all the cameras pointed squarely at him serves as a reminder of how much concentration is required to excel at this stage.

6:26 p.m. ET: Astros have answers
Carlos Correa and Justin Verlander -- who may be available to pitch tonight after his Game 6 gem -- take questions before Game 7.

6:09 p.m. ET: New York in the house
The Yankees emerge from the clubhouse and get situated in the dugout before taking the field for batting practice and fielding warmups.

5:44 p.m. ET: Hold your ap-Paul-se
The Game 7 thrills are palpable for Yankees legend and YES broadcaster Paul O'Neill.

5:39 p.m. ET: 'Stros pose
Tonight will be tense, but the Astros are staying loose during BP.

5:25 p.m. ET: Ya dig?
A dugout attendant surveys his domain at Minute Maid Park.

5:20 p.m. ET: Coach above reproach
Bat in hand, bench coach Alex Cora helps warm his Astros players up for Game 7.

5:01 p.m. ET: Balloon fan-imals
Astros fans know what's on the line tonight, and they're going to do their part to get Houston to the pennant.

4:51 p.m. ET: Hinch on clincher
Astros manager A.J. Hinch addresses the media ahead of the make-or-break series finale.

4:42 p.m. ET: Yanks name starting nine behind CC
Manager Joe Girardi is sticking with the same lineup that chased Morton after seven runs in 3 2/3 innings in Game 3.
Yankees, Astros set ALCS Game 7 lineups

4:19 p.m. ET: Bombers inbound
The Yankees arrive at Minute Maid Park in their street clothes. Check out Aaron Judge's slick salmon-colored polo.

4:03 p.m. ET: Houston announces lineup
Alex Bregman slides up to the two-hole with a lefty starter on the hill in manager A.J. Hinch's Game 7 lineup.