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NHL Plays: February 17

NHL Plays: February 17
Michael Finewax gives you his picks in DRAFT.com as well as some DFS bargains and must-haves for Sunday
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Aaron Judge hit a two-run home run in Sunday's ALCS Game 2 loss to the Astros.

Judge didn't really make his presence felt in a three-game sweep of the Rays in the ALDS, notching just three singles and walking four times in 14 plate appearances, but he announced his presence Sunday with a booming opposite-field, two-run blast off Astros starter Justin Verlander in the fourth inning. The homer was his first of the postseason and also accounted for his first two RBI this month. Despite not finding his power stroke before Sunday the 27-year-old has contributed offensively through five games, hitting .333 with a .978 OPS.
Oct 14 - 1:19 AM

George Springer hit his first home run of the postseason in Sunday's ALCS Game 2 win over the Yankees.

The Yankees had done their homework on Springer and knew he's a great fastball hitter, so they called upon reliever Adam Ottavino and his devastating slider to face Springer in the fifth inning. The only problem? Ottavino left one up and over the plate, and Springer didn't miss it. The solo homer knotted the game at 2-2, where it would stay until Carlos Correa's walk-off solo homer in the 11th. For Springer the homer was his first in seven games this postseason -- and also his first RBI -- as he's struggled at the dish against the Rays and now the Yanks. Through those seven games, the 30-year-old is hitting just .138 with a .435 OPS.
Oct 14 - 1:14 AM

Justin Verlander allowed two runs on five hits over 6 2/3 innings in a no-decision in Sunday's ALCS Game 2 against the Yankees.

Verlander was on point through three perfect innings but ran into trouble in the fourth, issuing a leadoff walk to DJ LeMahieu before Aaron Judge deposited a hanging slider over the wall in right-center field for a two-run shot. He allowed baserunners in the fifth and sixth innings as well -- including giving up three singles in the sixth, an inning that ended with LeMahieu being thrown out at home plate -- but kept the Yanks off the scoreboard. He finished with six strikeouts against two walks over his 6 2/3 innings. He's now had one dominant start, one clunker and one somewhere in between this postseason, owning a 3.11 ERA, 1.21 WHIP and 19/8 K/BB ratio over 17 1/3 innings of work this month. Sunday isn't likely to be the last time we see the 36-year-old during this series.
Oct 14 - 1:09 AM

James Paxton allowed a run on four hits over 2 1/3 innings in a no-decision in Sunday's ALCS Game 2 against the Astros.

Paxton worked a scoreless first inning before Alex Bregman led off the second with a single and Yordan Alvarez walked. A lineout put runners at the corners with one out and a Carlos Correa RBI double got the Astros on the board. He escaped that inning but a pair of one-out singles in the third was enough for Yankees manager Joe Girardi to go to his bullpen. Paxton was similarly a mixed bag in his ALDS start against the Twins in which he struck out eight but allowed three runs in 4 2/3 innings. With the series tied 1-1 there's a good chance the Yanks will need him later in this ALCS, so the southpaw can't let Sunday's abbreviated outing simmer for long.
Oct 14 - 1:08 AM

Carlos Correa hit a walk-off solo home run in the 11th inning Sunday to give the Astros a 3-2 win over the Yankees in Game 2 of the ALCS.

In a game with no shortage of tense moments it was a lightning strike from Correa that ended it in the blink of an eye, as the shortstop swatted a J.A. Happ offering over the right field wall leading off the bottom of the 11th. He knew it was gone, too, immediately looking over at his teammates in the dugout before putting a hand to his ear to let Astros fans know he wanted to hear them. Correa was the one who got the scoring started, too, when his RBI double in the second inning gave the Astros an early lead. The 25-year-old is hitting just .185 with a .556 OPS this postseason, but none of that mattered Sunday. The series now moves to New York on Tuesday.
Oct 14 - 1:07 AM

Carlos Beltran told the media Sunday that he's declined interview requests for the Padres' and Cubs' managerial openings.

Beltran is being considered for the Mets job, reportedly having interviewed this past Thursday, and apparently it's the only gig he's interested in. He also interviewed for the Yankees job in 2017 -- he's currently a special advisor to Yankees general manager Brian Cashman -- so it seems his managerial interests are limited to New York. The 42-year-old was by all accounts a popular player in the clubhouse and would continue the trend of recently retired players moving into major league managerial roles despite limited experience.
Oct 13 - 8:31 PM
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