Yankees' Jameson Taillon to start Game 1 of ALCS vs. Astros

ByJoon Lee ESPN logo
Wednesday, October 19, 2022

NEW YORK -- The New York Yankees have their starter set for Game 1 of the American League Championship Series against the Houston Astros.

Right-handerJameson Taillon, who had originally been scheduled to start Game 5 of the AL Division Series against the Cleveland Guardians on Tuesday, will now start Wednesday night's ALCS opener at Houston, which will go with Justin Verlander.

Monday's rainout enabled the Yankees to go with lefty Nestor Corteson three days' rest as their Game 5 starter after initially scheduling Taillon to start Monday. Cleveland startedAaron Civale. The Yankees defeated the Guardians 5-1 to set up another rematch with Houston for the AL pennant.

"[The Astros] have a lot of postseason experience," Taillon said after Tuesday's game. "Faced them once, learned a couple of lessons facing them. They're extremely deep. Power. They do a little bit of everything. Righties, lefties, a good balance. It's a good challenge."

Cortes, a fan favorite with his hesitation delivery that he used in the fifth, allowed one run on three hits, struck out two and walked one while throwing 61 pitches in five innings. Jonathan Loaisiga, Clay Holmes and Wandy Peralta finished with five-hit scoreless innings of relief.

Right-handers Ron Marinaccio and Frankie Montas were with New York at Yankee Stadium and prepared to travel to Houston in case the team decides to activate them against the Astros. Both pitchers have been sidelined with injuries, but manager Aaron Boone said they could "potentially" be ready for the ALCS.

Boone, meanwhile, ruled out outfielder Andrew Benintendifor the next round because of a lingering wrist injury but said infielder DJ LeMahieu's availability was still uncertain.

The AL matchup features the league's top two regular-season teams in the 106-win Astros and 99-win Yankees, a contrast to the National League Championship Series with wild cards San Diego and Philadelphia.

Playoff rounds overlapped onto the same day for the first time in Major League Baseball history, with the NL Championship Series starting less than 30 minutes after the Guardians-Yankees' final out.

The Yankees planned to land in Houston late Tuesday night for the ALCS opener.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.