That’s the way the Houston Astros handled the Cleveland Indians in a three-game sweep of the American League Division Series. After Monday’s 11-3 victory, the defending World Series champions now have a few days before they play either Boston or the Yankees in the next round.
The Astros dominated the series as convincingly as a sweep would indicate. Their pitching staff held the Indians to 13 hits and a .144 batting average. Their hitters hit .327 with eight home runs.cheap nfl nike jersey
The Astros did the big things better; they also did the little things better. Their pitching was suffocating, their hitting relentless. In the deciding Game 3, they scored 11 runs while also leaving 12 on base.
“There is an extra gear that our guys have,” manager AJ Hinch said. “And once we hit the postseason, it looks like, as of right now, that our guys really, really turned it on.”
Houston tied an American League record by hitting a home run in 12 consecutive postseason games going back to last season. George Springer had two home runs in the deciding game, giving him seven in his past seven postseason games.
According to Elias Sports research, Springer is only the fourth player in Major League Baseball history to achieve that feat, joining Carlos Beltran (2004), Reggie Jackson (1977-78) and Lou Gehrig (1928-32).
Houston won 103 games during the season, Boston 108 and the Yankees 100. Houston would get home field if the Yankees win their series against the Red Sox.cheap nfl jerseys china nike
“Our guys have an uncanny ability to focus on the day,” Hinch said. “Whether that’s at the beginning of the spring, into the season when we were pushed by our division, the A’s, into entering a playoff series with all the expectations, the target on our back.
“We’re the reigning world champs, and we really have a good ability to show up for the day.”