The Indians’ lead only lasted an inning and a half. George Springer saw to that, hitting a one-out homer off of Mike Clevinger to tie things up at one in the fifth.
It was the first offering Springer saw — an 81 m.p.h. slider that hung more than it slid — and Springer turned it into this ninth career postseason homer, which is a new Astros team record.
Clevinger finished off the fifth inning, striking out Jose Altuve, walking Alex Bregman and then bearing down to strike out Yuli Gurriel, but he’s at 99 pitches now, so we’re likely to see Terry Francona go to the pen to begin the top of the sixth.
Here’s the Springer Dinger:
George A. King III of the New York Post reports that the Yankees and outfielder Brett Gardner are back together on a one-year, $12.5 million contract. The deal includes a second year option worth $20 million.
Gardner, 36, is coming off of the strongest offensive season of his career, batting .251/.325/.503 with 28 home runs, 74 RBI, 86 runs scored, and 10 stolen bases over 550 plate appearances. While he has certainly lost a step or two with age, he still rates as an above-average defensive corner outfielder as well.
As Joel Sherman of the New York Post notes, the Yankees also value Gardner — a veteran of 12 seasons — for his leadership, especially with CC Sabathia and Didi Gregorius gone.
Bringing Gardner back into the fold allows Giancarlo Stanton to remain the full-time DH. Gardner will return to left field with Aaron Hicks and Aaron Judge reprising their roles in center and right, respectively.