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Mookie Betts joins 30/30 club


American League MVP Award candidate Mookie Betts stole his 30th base of the season on Wednesday afternoon as the Red Sox took on the Orioles. Betts walked to lead off the second inning against Donnie Hart, then swiped second base. He was stranded, but it didn’t matter much as the Red Sox lead 10-3 as of this writing.

Betts joins the Indians’ José Ramírez in the 30/30 club this season. The two are the first members of the 30/30 club since Mike Trout and Ryan Braun in 2012. Their 30/30 seasons are the 24th and 25th since 2000, and Betts’ is the 61st all-time.

Betts, who is 2-for-2 as this is published, entered the afternoon batting a major league best .343, slugging a major league best .639, and has scored a major league-high 125 runs. He also has a .434 on-base percentage, 32 home runs, 80 RBI, and 46 doubles. According to Baseball Reference, he has accrued 10.7 Wins Above Replacement, the highest total since Barry Bonds put up 11.8 in 2002.

Thanks in large part to Betts’ efforts, the Red Sox are on their way to their 107th win of the season. The previous high in team history was 105 set way back in 1912. The Red Sox will face the winner of the AL Wild Card game (Yankees or Athletics) in the ALDS and will have home field advantage throughout the playoffs.

Yankees, Astros lineups for ALCS Game 6

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Things haven’t gone quite according to plan for the Astros, who missed the opportunity to clinch the American League Championship Series after losing 4-1 to the Yankees in Game 5 on Friday. Still just one win away from a World Series invitation, they’ll try their luck again on Saturday night.

Neither lineup has been significantly altered for Game 6. The Yankees will try to push the series to a final Game 7 with right-hander Chad Green, backed by this configuration:

1. DJ LeMahieu (R) 1B
2. Aaron Judge (R) RF
3. Gleyber Torres (R) 2B
4. Aaron Hicks (S) CF
5. Edwin Encarnación (R) DH
6. Didi Gregorius (L) SS
7. Gary Sánchez (R) C
8. Gio Urshela (R) 3B
9. Brett Gardner (L) LF

The Astros, meanwhile, will send Brad Peacock to the mound in what figures to be a bullpen game for both sides, marking the righty’s first official postseason start since the 2017 ALDS. Martín Maldonado is back in the lineup, as is Josh Reddick, while both Robinson Chirinos and Jack Marisnick will be available off the bench.

1. George Springer (R) CF
2. José Altuve (R) 2B
3. Michael Brantley (L) LF
4. Alex Bregman (R) 3B
5. Yuli Gurriel (R) 1B
6. Carlos Correa (R) SS
7. Yordan Álvarez (L) DH
8. Martín Maldonado (R) C
9. Josh Reddick (L) RF

Starting tonight, the ALCS returns to Houston for Game 6 and a potential Game 7. Game time is set for 8:08 PM EDT.