Getty Images

Astros acquire Aaron Sanchez, Joe Biagini for Derek Fisher

Leave a comment

Hey, did you hear that the Astros picked up a starter? Big name. Aaron Sanchez.

OK, fine, he wasn’t the biggest starter they picked up in the last half hour, but it’s still an acquisition! The Astros have sent Derek Fisher to Toronto in exchange for Sanchez and reliever Joe Biagini.

Sanchez is 3-14 with an ugly 6.07 ERA in 23 starts this year. His velocity is down as is his ground ball rate. It’s hard to see where he fits on the Astros staff, but the Astros have a reputation for fixing broken pitchers, so maybe they can do things to him that’ll help him regain his form from his All-Star 2016 season.

Biagini, who has bounced back and forth between the Jays’ pen and rotation over the years is all-reliever these days and has a 3.86 ERA in 49 appearances.

Fisher, once a top Astros prospect, has never really developed the way people thought he might. He’s hitting .226/.317/.358 for an 81 OPS+ which is around about where he’s been over his three year big league career.

On a night full of letdowns, Yankees’ defense let them down the most

Alex Trautwig/MLB Photos via Getty Images
7 Comments

Game 4 of the ALCS was a gigantic letdown for the Yankees for myriad reasons. They lost, first and foremost, 8-3 to the Astros to fall behind three games to one. Their fans continued to act boorishly. CC Sabathia exited with an injury, likely the final time he’ll pitch in his career. The offense went 0-for-7 with runners in scoring position.

The biggest letdown of the night, though, was the Yankees’ defense. They committed four errors, their highest total in a postseason game since committing five errors in Game 2 of the 1976 ALCS.

Make no mistake: the two three-run home runs hit by George Springer and Carlos Correa, given up by Masahiro and Chad Green respectively, were the big blows in the game. But the errors contributed to the loss and were downright demoralizing.

The first error came at the start of the top of the sixth inning, when Alex Bregman hit a cue shot to first baseman DJ LeMahieu. LeMahieu couldn’t read the bounce and the ball clanked off of his knee, allowing Bregman to reach safely. He would score later in the inning on Correa’s blast.

The Yankees committed two errors in the top of the eighth, leading to a run. Yuli Gurriel hit another grounder to LeMahieu, which he couldn’t handle. That not only allowed Gurriel to reach safely, but Bregman — who led off with a double — moved to third base. He would score when second baseman Gleyber Torres couldn’t handle a Yordan Álvarez grounder.

Error number four occurred when Altuve hit a grounder to Torres to lead off the top of the ninth. The ball skipped right under his glove. Facing Michael Brantley, Jonathan Loaisiga uncorked a wild pitch which advanced Altuve to second base. Brantley followed up with a line drive single to left field, plating Altuve for another run. Loaisiga would throw another wild pitch facing Bregman but that one didn’t come back to haunt him.

The Yankees can’t control injuries, the behavior of their fans, or how good the Astros’ pitching is on any given night. They can control the quality of their defense. On Thursday, it was a farce, and now they’re staring down the barrel of having to win three consecutive games against the Astros to stave off elimination.