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Astros Crawfish Boil: October 1st, 2019

Start your morning with some of the best Astros links around

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MLB: Houston Astros at Los Angeles Angels Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

Check out the rest of the Crawfish Boxes here

Astros News

To the surprise of very few objective observers, the Astros enter October as World Series favorites (ESPN)
They’ll get their chance to prove why that is in the ALDS, and here are the start times for the first two games (Houston Chronicle)
It won’t be easy for their opponents who will need to go through the Astros’ big three in the rotation to have a chance (Astros.com)
One of those pitchers, Zack Greinke, is proof that the Astros’ see right now as their time to win it all (Baseball America)
Speaking of pitchers, Octobers past may give us some insight into how AJ will manage them this year (The Athletic, $$$)
Gerrit Cole snagged AL Pitcher of the Month in September, his third time winning the award this season (Astros.com)
Which just adds to the case for extending Gerrit Cole, as if it was even needed (Astros County)
A good number of people are jonesing for a 2017 rematch in the World Series this year (The Ringer)
But no matter who they play this postseason, the Astros are baseball’s Harlem Globetrotters looking for their Washington Generals (The Runners Sports)
Carlos Correa has pledged $10,000 to the family of slain Houston Deputy Sandeep Dhaliwal (KHOU 11)
The family of recently deceased Astros superfan Harold Westfall was surprised by tickets to the ALDS from another fan (ABC 13)

Around the League

The playoffs officially start tonight with the NL Wild Card game, and here’s a preview of that contest (FanGraphs)
After a gutsy season, will this be the year that the Nationals finally make a legitimate playoff run? (Sports Illustrated)
No matter how it shakes out the Nats are hoping to have MVP candidate Anthony Rendon around for many more playoff pushes as they offered him a 7-year contract (MLB.com)
With four 100-win teams heading into October, the playoffs are starting to look like a possible clash of the titans (NY Times)
But the pitchers will have to contend with home runs since that’s what the game is all about this year (AP news)
More than a few of the possible combinations could make for a classic World Series rematch this year (538 Sports)
After playing hero in the first half Luke Voit may not even make the Yankees’ postseason roster thanks to a late-season slump (MLB Trade Rumors)