Carlos Correa played hero in Game 5
Correa hit the walk-off to win Game 5, and has been raking in the lineup ever since he declared the Astros are embracing their villain status. Now the Astros enter another must-win situation in Game 6, facing a Rays team ready to ride their ace and avoid disaster. A loss from Tampa Bay would push them to the brink despite once possessing a 3-0 lead. Blowing any advantage of that kind has only happened once, when the New York Yankees fell to the Boston Red Sox in 2004.
Dusty Baker is going with his gut, as he usually does, with the Astros Game 6 lineup. Correa will be moved up to the cleanup spot, hopefully giving him more at-bats in the process.
Correa moves up, and Alex Bregman moves down
Bregman hasn’t been his usual self in the ALCS, and perhaps a warning from Baker will jolt his confidence. Michael Brantley and Jose Altuve also switched spots in the starting nine, with Altuve hitting second behind George Springer. Aledmys Diaz will get the start in left field instead of Josh Reddick.
Correa said it from the jump — the Astros aren’t ready to go home just yet. Their lineup is as dangerous as ever, and with timely pitching from Framber Valdez, they can force a Game 7 and really put the pressure on Kevin Cash and the Rays.
Until then, the majority of baseball fans around America will hold their breath, and root for any alternative.