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2020 ALCS Game 3: Tampa Bay Rays vs Houston Astros

2020 ALCS

Rays Look to Take Commanding Lead in 2020 ALCS

The Houston Astros are in need of a swift turnaround entering Game 3 of the 2020 ALCS. Manager Dusty Baker insists there won’t be a gathering of the troops prior to Tuesday’s critical game against the Tampa Bay Rays.

TIME: 8:40 p.m. ET. TV: TBS; BETTING LINE: Rays -110 / TOTAL 8.5 O -116

The Astros offense is in a funk and has to turn things around. The squad scored just three runs and left 21 runners on base while losing the first two games at Petco Park in San Diego.

“I’m not going to have a message other than, ‘Hey boys, we got to keep swinging it,'” Baker said Monday after Houston’s 4-2 setback in Game 2. “That’s all you can do. Talk is cheap. We just got to find some holes.”

The team has been stopped by the Tampa Bay defense and it has been a recurring theme over the first two games. Rays third baseman Joey Wendle has been outstanding. Right fielder Manuel Margot made a catch for the ages in Game 2 as he flipped over the right field fence in foul territory.

The lack of production, along with the Rays great play, leaves the Astros in must-win mode entering Game 3 of the 2020 ALCS. The sentiment is if they keep hitting the ball hard things will turn around.

“It’s very frustrating … it hurts,” Baker said. “You just know if we keep hitting the ball like that, we’re going to get some breaks at some point.”

Tampa Bay Takes Advantage of Mistakes in 2020 ALCS

Tampa Bay took advantage of their biggest break Monday night. It was a throwing error by Houston second baseman Jose Altuve that prolonged the first inning.

Two pitches later the score was 3-0. Margot slugged a homer to center that provided the Rays with all the runs they would need.

Tampa Bay had just four hits in Game 2, but it was enough. Two were homers and helped expand the lead they wouldn’t relinquish. Mike Zunino also smashed one over the center field fence.

Five of the Rays’ six runs in the series have come on homers. Randy Arozarena hit a solo blast during Tampa Bay’s 2-1 win in the opener. He also added an RBI single in that contest.

Tampa Bay has just 10 hits in the series, they are timely and with runners on base. Their offensive woes aren’t deep under the microscope like Houston’s since the team won both games.

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Astros Have to Find Answers in 2020 ALCS

Houston’s three runs have come on two solo homers and a ground ball. Altuve in Game 1, and Carlos Correa in Game 2. George Springer’s double-play ball in the ninth inning of Game 2.

Right-hander Jose Urquidy will get the ball for the Astros in Game 3. He is making his third start of the postseason. He pitched 4-1/3 innings in each start and received a no-decision each time.

The 25-year-old gave up one run and two hits against the Minnesota Twins in Game 2 of the first-round series. He then served up four solo homers while allowing four runs and five hits against the Oakland Athletics in Game 3 of the AL Division Series.

This, That, and a Dart Throw

Tampa Bay will counter with left-hander Ryan Yarbrough He is making his first career postseason start.

Yarbrough pitched five innings of relief against the New York Yankees in Game 4 of the ALDS. He gave up two runs and six hits. He struck out one and walked one.

Yarbrough also made three relief appearances in the 2019 postseason. The 28-year old went 1-0 while allowing no runs and two runs in three innings. His career postseason ERA is 2.25. He went 1-4 with a 3.56 ERA in 11 games (nine starts) in the 2020 regular-season. He pitched five or more innings seven times.

Urquidy will be opposing the Rays for the first time in his two-year major league career.

Yarbrough has an 0-1 record with a 2.92 ERA against the Astros in two career meetings (one start).

The Dart Throw: Astros 6, Rays 3

Tampa Bay Rays vs Houston Astros Matchup

AstrosCategoryRays
46-22W/L34-33
26-10HOME21-11
20-12AWAY13-22
35-33ATS31-36
17-19ATS HOME13-19
18-14ATS AWAY18-17
31-34O/U32-32
18-17O/U HOME16-15
13-17O/U AWAY16-17
Houston Astros
Houston is 5-1 ATS in its last 6 games
Houston is 5-1 SU in its last 6 games
Houston is 1-6 ATS in its last 7 games at home
Houston is 17-7 SU in its last 24 games at home
The total has gone UNDER in 6 of Houston’s last 9 games at home
Houston is 7-15 ATS in its last 22 games when playing Tampa Bay
Houston is 6-1 ATS in its last 7 games when playing at home against Tampa Bay
Houston is 6-1 SU in its last 7 games when playing at home against Tampa Bay
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Houston’s last 6 games when playing at home against Tampa Bay
Tampa Bay Rays
Tampa Bay is 9-2 ATS in its last 11 games
Tampa Bay is 9-2 SU in its last 11 games
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Tampa Bay’s last 6 games
Tampa Bay is 14-7 ATS in its last 21 games on the road
Tampa Bay is 16-6 SU in its last 22 games on the road
The total has gone UNDER in 11 of Tampa Bay’s last 13 games on the road
Tampa Bay is 15-7 ATS in its last 22 games when playing Houston
Tampa Bay is 1-6 ATS in its last 7 games when playing on the road against Houston
Tampa Bay is 1-6 SU in its last 7 games when playing on the road against Houston
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Tampa Bay’s last 6 games when playing on the road against Houston

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