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New York Yankees vs. Houston Astros: CC Sabathia vs. Charlie Morton

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The Bombers look to avoid dropping their second series in a week to AL West foes.

CC Sabathia allowed a total of one run in two ALCS starts versus the Astros in 2017.
CC Sabathia allowed a total of one run in two ALCS starts versus the Astros in 2017.
Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

The Yankees enter tonight’s action with the second-best record in baseball at 33-17. They trail Boston by two games in the AL East race. After losing to Justin Verlander in yesterday’s series opener, the Bombers look to get back on track against Charlie Morton (7-0, 2.04 ERA). CC Sabathia (2-1, 3.55 ERA) toes the slab for New York.

Pitching matchup

Sabathia is coming off his worst start of 2018. He allowed seven earned runs against the Rangers in Arlington last Wednesday, and didn’t complete five innings.

Prior to that, CC performed exceptionally well for the Yankees this year. He limited opponents to two runs or fewer in six of his eight other starts. Sabathia has largely succeeded in limiting hard contact, allowing zero homers in five starts and only one in two others.

The veteran left-hander has not yet pitched against the Astros this season. He limited Houston to a total of one run in two ALCS starts in 2017. Sabathia threw six innings of three-hit shutout ball at Yankee Stadium in the Game 3 win. He then allowed a solo homer in the Game 7 defeat. CC was opposed by Charlie Morton in both games.

Morton is enjoying the best season of his eleven-year career. Eight of his ten outings were quality starts. The right-hander notched ten strikeouts against the Yankees in Houston on April 30th, while holding them to one run on two hits over 7 2/3 innings.

The 34-year-old posted double-digit strikeouts two other times this year, including 14 over seven innings two starts ago. Morton walks a lot of people, too. So the Yankees would be wise to remain patient at the plate. Morton has issued 3.1 bases on balls per nine this season, which is right in line with his career average.

Game 3 of the ALCS was Morton’s last start in Yankee Stadium. The Bombers roughed him up for seven runs, and he failed to finish the fourth inning. Morton allowed four earned runs in each of his two career regular-season starts in the Bronx, including an outing last May.

Lineups

How to watch

Location: Yankee Stadium

First pitch: 7:05 PM EDT

TV channel: WPIX, MLBN (out-of-market only)

Online streaming: MLB.tv (out-of-market only)

Radio broadcast: WFAN 660/101.9 FM, WADO 1280 (full listings)

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