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Athletics claim Trayce Thompson off waivers from Yankees

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What was your favorite memory of Trayce Thompson in Yankees pinstripes?

Was it . . . no, everyone says that. Maybe it was . . . ah, yes, that was quite a highlight. Alas, those days are over and we’re not likely to see Thompson back at Yankee Stadium until they unveil his outfield monument. For, you see, he has been waived and claimed by the Oakland Athletics. The end of an era.

Thompson was claimed by the Yankees from the Dodgers way back on *blows dust off of paper records* April 3, presumably to deal with the spate of injuries to outfielders Aaron HicksBilly McKinney, Clint Frazier and Jacoby Ellsbury. Frazier is getting close to returning to action and, perhaps, the Yankees just decided the Trayce Thompson era had run its course, so off he goes.

The A’s getting him puts Thompson in the same town as his brother, Klay, who I’ve heard is something of an athlete himself. Good for him. Maybe he’ll be on the sports pages one day himself.

Thompson, 27, was designated for assignment by the Dodgers at the end of spring training. He struggled in 27 regular season games last year, posting a .483 OPS. He did show some power and speed potential as a minor leaguer so maybe the A’s can squeeze something out of him.

Yankees keep ALCS hopes alive with 4-1 win over Astros

Gio Urshela
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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.