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The Mets have reached out to Brad Ausmus for their managerial opening

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Jon Heyman of FanRag reports that the New York Mets have reached out to former Tigers manager Brad Ausmus regarding their managerial opening. Heyamn says that Ausmus is “on the radar” of the Mets and that the two sides have had one conversation thus far.

On the one hand I can see Ausmus fitting in with the Mets as, reportedly, Sandy Alderson’s beef with Terry Collins was that he managed by his gut and didn’t carry out the front office vision the way Alderson would’ve liked. Ausmus, despite his poor showing in Detroit in the past couple of years, is more of an intellectual type and always seemed like a good company man in Detroit. His m.o. back when he was a backup catcher toward the end of his career was to be hyper-prepared, compiling reports on opposing hitters and helping his teammates prepare, almost like an assistant coach. That sort of left-brained approach likewise translates better to what Alderson expects from a manager.

At the same time, Ausmus was given a veteran, recently-contending team with the Tigers and often seemed smaller than the task at hand. When times were tough he seemed like a deer in the headlights, and that was under the relatively minor pressure of the Detroit media. How will he handle a team that, while it struggled in 2017, is still laden with veterans and expectations, all cast against the New York media?

I dunno. I think Ausmus probably deserves another shot at some point. One where he’s grown up with the team rather than one in which he’s coming in following the departure of an old guy and is expected to continue a pattern of recent success, however interrupted it has been.¬† Stranger things have happened, I suppose, but the Mets’ situation does not seem well-suited for him, or him for it.

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).