Springer, Correa lift Astros over Yanks for commanding ALCS lead
NEW YORK - C.C. Sabathia threw a cutter to George Springer and grimaced from the pain in his left shoulder, then covered his face with his glove as he walked to the dugout after what was likely the final pitch of his career.
Three-time Gold Glove winner D.J. LeMahieu and Gleyber Torres each made a pair of errors.
Gary Sanchez, Torres and Edwin Encarnacion all struck out with the bases loaded, letting Astros pitchers Zack Greinke and Ryan Pressly escape.
Houston's 8-3 victory over the listless, sloppy Yankees on Thursday night gave the Astros a 3-1 advantage in the best-of-seven American League Championship Series.
And now the Yankees face Justin Verlander in Game 5 on Friday night as they try to avoid what would be their first calendar decade without a World Series appearance since the 1910s.
"We played poorly tonight. There's no other way to explain it," manager Aaron Boone said after addressing the team in a postgame meeting. "We need to flush this immediately."
New York was 0 for 7 with runners in scoring position, dropping to 4 for 27 in the four games. The Yankees stranded 10 runners, increasing their series total to 33. They struck out 13 times, giving them 43 in the series.
James Paxton takes the mound Friday after getting just seven outs in Game 2, hoping to avoid what would be just the third four-game losing streak for New York this season.
Carlos Correa returned to the Astros' lineup Tuesday night, batting seventh and playing shortstop against the Rangers, as he works his way back into late-season shape in the wake of his absence since Aug. 20
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