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Game 126: Red Sox at Astros

Take out the trash

League Championship Series - Boston Red Sox v Houston Astros - Game Five Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images

Welp, the starter who wasn’t good in Cristian Javier beat the starter having a good year in James Paxton. Welcome back Tanner Houck! You’re good need all the help you can get.

A few moves before lineups:

Houck is back, Chris Murphy heads to Triple A, Jarren Duran hits the IL, and Wilyer Aubreu joins the big league club.

Tanner Houck last appeared on June 16th and, thanks to the Yankees, took a ball of the face. Two months later following surgery and a rehab stint and he’s back in business. He returns to a 5.05 ERA / 4.29 FIP but also a defensive shortstop named Trevor Story, an upgrade over the start of the season. In three Triple A starts totaling 8.2 innings Houck struck out 10, walked 3, and allowed just 2 runs.

Justin Verlander was traded to the Astros in 2017 and remained there through the 2022 season. He tested free agency and signed with the New York Mets. When the LOLMets fell apart, they flipped him back to the Astros for prospects. The Astros, trailing the Texas Rangers who added Max Scherzer, needed pitching. The veteran missed April on the IL, had a subpar May, improved during June and July, and has really had simply and OK August and return to Houston. While the Astros won his last two starts they were more victories because of offensive performances: 12-5, 13-3. The start before was a 3-1 loss. So freeing 3 or 4 runs off Verlander in 5 or 6 innings isn’t the task it used to be. Maybe some more Justin Turner magic…

Trevor Story is back at shortstop with JT here to DH.

Connor Wong gets the start at catcher.

Masataka Yoshida is 2-15 over his last three games. Maybe Verlander is what he needs to break out of the slump?

Game 126: Red Sox at Astros

Lineup spot Red Sox Astros
Lineup spot Red Sox Astros
1 Alex Verdugo, RF Jose "Buzzer" Altuve, 2B
2 Rafael Devers, 3B Alex Bergman, 3B
3 Justin Turner, DH Kyle Tucker, RF
4 Masataka Yoshida, LF Yainer Diaz, DH
5 Adam Duvall, CF Chas McCormick, LF
6 Triston Casas, 1B Mauricio Dubón, CF
7 Trevor Story, SS Jon Singleton, 1B
8 Luis Urías, 2B Jeremy Peña, SS
9 Connor Wong, C Martín Maldonado, C
SP Tanner Houck, RHP Justin Verlander, RHP

First pitch is at 8:10 PM ET on WEEI and NESN.