It’s good to be the king: David Freese wows ’em at Macy’s

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After his heroics in the World Series, you had to know that life was going to become very, very good for David Freese.

As a Cardinal playing in his native St. Louis, the World Series MVP might never again be forced to buy his own drink or pay for his own dinner, even if he regresses to Willie Bloomquist for the rest of his career.

From tooling around in his brand new Corvette, to hanging out on the “Tonight Show” with Justin Bieber (right), the offseason is going to be quite enjoyable for the 28-year-old third baseman.

And if you think I’m lying, check out this headline from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch: David Freese wows a Macy’s Galleria crowd.

Yeah that’s right, the Richmond Heights, Mo. Macy’s was abuzz on Wednesday, and I’m not exaggerating. According to the story, fans started getting in line the night before to snag one of the 275 wristbands that gave them a chance to take part in the event. The wristband gave the bearer the right to spend “at least $50 on Macy’s merchandise,” which you have to admit is quite a deal all by itself. (Think they sold any of these?)

But of course that’s not all they got, the big payoff being a signed baseball from their hero. Not too bad when you think about it, for the fans or for Freese.

Enjoy your new-found celebrity Mr. MVP. It’s good to be the king.

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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).