Houston (2-2) at Kansas City (2-2)
When: Wednesday, October 14th, 2015
Where: Kauffman Stadium, Kansas City, MO
Time: 8:05 ET
TV: FOX Sports 1 Radio: XM 176, 80, 89
The Houston Astros travel back to Kansas City to play a Game 5 that should have never happened. The Astros had a 6-2 lead entering the 8th inning of Game 4 when disaster struck. Carlos Correa committed a key error and the Royals stringed together several hits to take the lead and force Game 5 back at home. Correa was the hero early at the plate as he went 4-for-4 with two homeruns and 4 RBI. Colby Rasmus contributed with another homerun giving him 4 in five postseason games including the Wild Card. The only game he didn’t hit one was Game 3 when he had a single and three walks. Carlos Gomez seems healthy again as he hit a homerun in Game 4 after missing the first two games of the series. Kansas City got contributions from everyone in the last game as seven different Royals scored. Eric Hosmer and Salvador Perez each homered and the top 4 in the batting order scored a combined 6 runs. That’s the way the Royals have been doing it for two years now. Key hits by everyone when they need it most. Hosmer was 1-for-12 before his two-hit, 3 RBI effort on Monday.
Collin McHugh will start this deciding game after earning the win in Game 1 while allowing 2 runs and 4 hits in 6 innings. The right-hander yielded a pair of solo home runs to Kendrys Morales in the contest but had little trouble with the rest of the Kansas City lineup despite having to sit through a rain delay in the second inning that lasted nearly an hour. McHugh is 7-0 in his last eight starts and allowed two or fewer earned runs in five of those outings. The struggling Johnny Cueto will start for Kansas City. He has not been what the Royals had hoped for since being acquired from the Reds prior to the trade deadline and was hit for 4 runs on 7 hits and 3 walks in 6 innings without factoring in the decision in Game 2. Cueto allowed opponents a .307 batting average in 13 regular-season starts with Kansas City and put his team in an early hole in Game 2 by allowing all four runs in the first three innings. He is 0-2 with a 5.52 ERA in four career postseason starts.
Houston has been hitting the ball all series and even though this Kansas City team is good and will never quit, I don’t think they can get over what harm I think Cueto will cause them tonight. He’s just been extremely unreliable and will probably have a very short leash tonight. McHugh was good in Game 1 and if he just pitches half as good, I think Houston advances.
Pick: Astros +123