The Baltimore Orioles have spent over a week considering possible Manny Machado trades. It’s a simple calculation, really. They don’t think they can sign him when he becomes a free agent after the 2018 season and they’re trying to get something for him rather than nothing but a draft pick.
Jim Bowden of Sirius XM and The Athletic hears, however, that Orioles’ ownership may not be willing to sign off on trading Manny Machado even if GM Dan Duquette can strike a deal. Bowden says that eight teams have made offers to the O’s for Machado.
It was previously reported that Peter Angelos wouldn’t trade Machado to an interdivisional rival like the Yankees, which is understandable. But it now seems like he’s hesitant to trade Machado anywhere. That could be because he’s worried that an acquiring team might flip Machado to the Yankees, which is a distinct possibility. It could be, though, that he just doesn’t want to part with his star player.
The Orioles are reportedly eager to be done with the Machado drama, one way or another, this week. If Angelos is looming with his veto pen, it may very well be “the other.”
The Yankees defeated the Astros 4-1 during Game 5 of the American League Championship Series on Friday night, staving off a potential postseason elimination and forcing the series to at least six games.
In just the third playoff appearance of his career, Yankees southpaw James Paxton turned in another impressive performance, limiting the Astros to four hits and four walks over six innings of one-run ball. According to MLB Stats, his nine strikeouts made him the second Yankees lefty to record multiple starts of 8+ strikeouts in the same postseason campaign, two decades after David Wells did so for the 1998 championship-winning club.
Paxton’s strong outing was backed by a handful of runs from DJ LeMahieu and Aaron Hicks, both of whom went deep against Astros ace Justin Verlander in the bottom of the first inning. LeMahieu’s leadoff solo shot marked his first postseason home run since Game 1 of the ALDS, while Hicks’ three-run 347-footer was his first home run of any variety since July 24 (and his first in the playoffs since the 2017 ALDS).
Neither team managed a single run after the first inning, leaving the two pitching staffs to duke it out for eight quick innings. Verlander outlasted Paxton — taking the game through the seventh with five hits, four runs, and nine strikeouts — but even with a flawless contribution from Brad Peacock in the eighth, there was little the hurlers could do to help the Astros solve Paxton and an airtight Yankees bullpen.
With the win, the Yankees will try to push the series to a full seven games in order to snatch the AL pennant from the Astros. They’ll have to do in Houston, however, as the Astros will regain home field advantage when Game 6 kicks off on Saturday at 8:08 PM EDT. Neither starter has been announced yet; per Houston skipper A.J. Hinch, it will likely be a bullpen day.