Kevin Millar: Astros, not Yankees, team to beat in American League


One of baseball's most contentious rivalries was renewed this past weekend in the Bronx, and the highly-anticipated series lived up to its billing with must-see drama and tension. The New York Yankees and Houston Astros turned up the heat by splitting a four-game set at Yankee Stadium, and although neither team gained any ground, there were reasons for optimism in both dugouts.

New York earned two victories in dramatic fashion, as superstar Aaron Judge delivered clutch walk-off hits when late-inning rallies seemed unlikely. But, in between those games, Houston's pitching staff dominated. Not only did they throw a combined no-hitter on Saturday, but they held the Yankees hitless for 16 straight innings, tying an Expansion Era record (since 1961). And, as if their bouts needed more theater, Jose Altuve hit homers while mercilessly booed.

"I think the Astros are just the team to beat -- they just keep going and going, until you're proven wrong," MLB Network analyst Kevin Millar explained to The DA Show on Monday. "And Dusty Baker was a perfect voice to bring in during the perfect time -- when the sky was falling on the Astros and everybody was talking about the trash cans. Now, the question will be, is this the year Dusty can get over the hump and get that championship. But I did like the series...

"I do like their starting staff. Justin Verlander is like Tom Brady. Who's going to match up with him? And the experience of Altuve and the team. When you go ahead and put them down, they immediately step on the field as favorites, if you've got them at full strength. And Yordan Alvarez has turned into the new Big Papi. So if you just look around, they play defense, they pitch. They have a decent enough bullpen and they hit. And, they have experience."

The entire baseball conversation between Millar and DA can be accessed in the audio player above.

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