Tigers look to move Guillen, acquire Pierre

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The Tigers would “love” to come up with a three-team trade that would result in them surrendering Carlos Guillen and landing Juan Pierre, says FOXSports.com’s Jon Paul Morosi.
Now, we’re still rather skeptical about Morosi as a national guy, but he did work for the Detroit Free Press before joining FOX. He should know about as well as anyone what the Tigers are thinking.
And if this is what they’re thinking, perhaps something could be worked out. Guillen is due $26 million over the next two years, while Pierre will make $18.5 million. So, again, the Tigers are being motivated by finances here.
But Guillen has gone from being an extremely valuable shortstop to a question mark in left field during his Tigers tenure. His OPS has dropped sharply three years running:
2006 – 920 (153 games)
2007 – 859 (151 games)
2008 – 811 (113 games)
2009 – 757 (81 games)
Guillen has a chance to be an above average left fielder for the duration of his contract, and the Tigers do have need of one of those. However, Pierre is cheaper and he’d fill the center field and leadoff slots while the team waits for Austin Jackson.
To make a deal work, the Tigers would have to find a team willing to accept Guillen in return for an overpaid pitcher. Seattle’s Carlos Silva would make a ton of sense, given that the Mariners have plenty of use for a right-handed hitter capable of playing first base and left field, but he’s due $22.5 million over the next two years — $4 million more than Pierre — and the Dodgers should have very little interest in him. The Mets’ Oliver Perez could work. He’s due $24 million through 2011. Derek Lowe’s contract fits, but the Dodgers have no interest in bringing him back.

Astros push ALCS to Game 7 with 7-1 stunner against Yankees

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There’s just something about playing in your home ballpark. The Astros decimated the Yankees at Minute Maid Park on Friday, riding seven scoreless innings from Justin Verlander and a pair of big runs from Jose Altuve to win 7-1 and force a Game 7 in the American League Championship Series.

Through the first four innings, however, the teams looked equally matched. Luis Severino no-hit the Astros through 3 2/3 innings, losing his bid on Carlos Correa‘s line drive single in the fourth. The Astros returned in the fifth to do some real damage, drawing two walks and plating the first run of the night with Brian McCann‘s ground-rule double off of the right field wall. Things didn’t get any easier for Severino. Jose Altuve lined a two-RBI base hit into left field, upping Houston’s advantage to three runs.

Verlander, meanwhile, muted the Yankees’ offense with seven innings of five-hit, eight-strikeout ball. While he didn’t come close to matching his complete game effort in Game 2, he was still plenty dominant against a struggling New York lineup. No player reached past first base until the sixth inning, when a pair of base hits from Chase Headley and Didi Gregorius gave the Yankees their first runner in scoring position. That didn’t last long, though, as Gary Sanchez grounded out on a 3-0 slider to end the inning.

In the seventh, Houston’s ace got into another spot of trouble. He walked Greg Bird on six pitches to start the inning, then plunked Starlin Castro on the wrist. Aaron Hicks struck out, in part thanks to a questionable call by home plate umpire Jim Reynolds, but it was Todd Frazier who presented the biggest threat after returning an 0-1 fastball for a 403-foot fly out to left field. Luckily for Verlander, George Springer was there to bail him out with a leaping catch at the wall.

The Yankees kept things exciting in the eighth, too. Aaron Judge ripped his third postseason home run off of Brad Peacock, taking a 425-footer out to the train in left field to spoil the Astros’ shutout. That was the only real break the Yankees got, however, as Altuve, Alex Bregman and Evan Gattis returned in the bottom of the inning to tack on another four runs, including Altuve’s solo shot off of David Robertson:

Ken Giles handled the ninth, expending 23 pitches and giving up a base hit and a walk before retiring Frazier and Headley to end the game. Thanks to Houston’s winning efforts, the two teams will compete in their first seven-game Championship Series since 2004 — and this time, at least one of them is guaranteed to come away with a win.

Game 7 of the ALCS is set for Saturday at 8:00 PM ET. Houston right-hander Charlie Morton (14-7, 3.62 ERA) is scheduled to face southpaw CC Sabathia (14-5, 3.69 ERA).