Astros Fans - It is NOT 2004 in the ALCS

Spend any time around a Yankees fan in the last 24 hours and they feel COMPELLED to give an Astros fan a history lesson about how THEY lost the ALCS in 2004 while being up 3-0.


Astros Fans, it is NOT 2004 again and let me show you why.


To understand this issue one must do an assessment of the two teams in 2004. I am not going to discuss ANY of the individual players. let just look at the team stats.


2004 Season Records


New York won 101 games and Boston won 98. Not a huge difference but like the Astros do now, New York had home field advantage.


Batting in 2004


Without the names which of these two teams is better in hittin

B is right? That is the Boston Red Sox.


Pitching in 2004


Without the names which of these two teams is better?

B is right? That is the Boston Red Sox.


The point is when down 0-3 BOSTON still had the better team. So what happened is the better team started to play like it.


That is a WAY oversimplification of what happened, BUT it is far more true than most of the mystical analysis that gets applied to the 2004 ALCS.


How do these teams compare with the 2022 ALCS teams.


2022 Season Records


Houston won 106 games and Boston won 99. Not a huge gap but bigger than the gap was in 2004. Yankees fans will claim Boone was sitting their starters more and thats why they the gap is so big. Sure.


Let me now give you the bad news,


Batting in 2022


Overall in 2022 the Yankees have a SLIGHT advantage over the Astros in hitting. While in 2003 Boston had a 21 point gap in OPS, the Yankees only have an 8 point gap in OPS. While in 2003 Boston had a 13 point gap in wOBA, the Yankees only have an 3 point gap in wOBA.


Here is also an issue for the Yankees. Let's look at the biggest batters for both teams that are unavailable for the ALCS.

The Yankees have lost a combined total of 1515 PA (out of 6172 PA total). Yankees fans will try to claim all those players suck and they are better of with unproven players than these three playoff veterans. Just laugh when they do.


By contrast the Astros have lost at total of 525 PA (from their total 6054 PA). Yes not having Brantley hurts, but he hasn't played since 6/26/22. Meyers COLD be available if the Astros needed him. Vazquez is a definite upgrade to Castro.


In short, at worst, the batting between these two teams is even. The ALCS matchup guide shows the Astros actually have an advantage.


If that is the bad news then the Good News must be pretty good.


Pitching in 2022


Overall, the pitching advantage the Astros have in this series is at least on par with what the Red Sox had in 2004. The Houston pitch advantage is way more significant than any advantage one may give the Yankees in hitting.


We have seen this play out in these first three games. Houston PITCHING is dominating this series.


Therefore, in 2004 the better team was down 0-3; and in 2022 the better team is UP 3-0.


Don't let any Yankees fans gaslight you into worry. Even if the Astros lose a tight matchup today in game 4, do not be dismayed. It is NOT 2004 again.


The statistics referenced here come from Baseball-Reference.com and Fangraphs.com.


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