Three takeaways from Rays’ Game 4 victory against Astros

Another division series has been extended to five games, as Tampa Bay topped Houston 4-1 Tuesday at Tropicana Field in the ALDS.

The Astros have what’s probably MLB’s best pitching rotation, but its poor management of that led to its downfall.

Here are three takeaways from the Rays’ big win

Starting Justin Verlander backfired for the Astros

Justin Verlander pushed for Houston to start him in Game 4 of the American League Division Series on three days rest, but he struggled with command and movement against Tampa Bay. He consistently sailed balls high and his sliders simply weren’t sliding. When you throw as many balls right down the pipe as Verlander did, you’re bound to get punished.

The ace’s first inning was drawn out, as he forked up a home run, allowed three scores, and threw 32 pitches. Although the 36-year-old ace held the Rays scoreless in the second inning, he gave up a second home run in the fourth inning before being pulled. He finished after throwing 84 pitches in 3 2/3 innings of work.

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