Astros hold Yankees in check with 4-1 win in Game 3, take 2-1 ALCS lead

NEW YORK – Houston jumped out to a lead on the third pitch of the game Tuesday and held on for a 4-1 win in Game 3 of the American League Championship Series.

Houston now holds a 2-1 series lead. New York won Game 1, but the Astros answered with a walk-off win in Game 2 at Minute Maid Park. Game 4 is scheduled for Wednesday night.

Jose Altuve ambushed a Luis Severino 87-mph slider, the first pitch of his at-bat, and took it 420 feet to left-center in the top of the first inning.

Gerrit Cole battled through seven innings of shutout ball, walking five and striking out seven, earning his third win of the 219 postseason.

Houston doubled its lead in the second inning thanks to Josh Reddick's 410-foot homer to the second deck in right field.

The Astros doubled the lead again in the top of the seventh inning. After loading the bases with one out, Altuve scored on a wild pitch and Yuli Gurriel hit a sacrifice fly, scoring Michael Brantley.

Houston held a 4-0 lead until the bottom of the eighth inning when Gleybar Torres hit a solo homer to right field off Joe Smith, who entered to start the inning in relief of Cole, who threw 112 pitches.

Will Harris relieved Smith after the solo shot and finished off the eighth, inducing a popout and groundout on three pitches.

Roberto Osuna entered to start the ninth inning and slammed the door on the Yankees, needing only eight pitches to seal the win.