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A study in playoff contrasts begins when the Minnesota Twins visit the Houston Astros on Saturday at Minute Maid Park. The Twins are newbies here. This is a franchise that had lost 18 straight playoff games going back to 2004 and hadn't won a playoff series since 2002, all until just a few days ago. Now they have won two straight playoff games and swept a playoff series heading into this one. 

The Astros are a "been there, done that" group. Since the beginning of the 2017 season, the Astros have won two World Series and four AL championships. In that time, they are an astounding 13-4 in playoff series, carrying an overall W-L record of 53-33. 

Will the Astros again advance or will the Twins finally head back to the American League Championship Series? We'll see starting Saturday. 

You can view the full postseason schedule by clicking here, and here's the 2023 playoff bracket. Now, let's get to the important stuff for the ALDS.

Astros vs. Twins schedule

Saturday, Oct. 7
Game 1: Twins at Astros, 4:45 p.m. ET, FS1

Sunday, Oct. 8
Game 2: Twins at Astros, 8:03 p.m. ET, FS1

Tuesday, Oct. 10
Game 3: Astros at Twins, 4:07 p.m. ET, Fox

Wednesday, Oct. 11
Game 4 (if necessary): Astros at Twins, 2:07 p.m. ET, FS1  

Friday, Oct. 13
Game 5 (if necessary): Twins at Astros, 4:07 p.m. ET, FS1

How to watch Game 1

Date: Saturday, Oct. 7 | Time: 4:45 p.m. ET
Location: Minute Maid Park (Houston, TX)
TV channel: FS1 (Game is airing on FS2 and MLB Network while Orioles-Rangers finishes) | Live stream: fubo (try for free)
Starting pitchers: RHP Bailey Ober (8-6, 3.43 ERA) vs. RHP Justin Verlander (13-8, 3.22 ERA)

Astros vs. Twins odds

Series odds: HOU -170 | MIN +143
Game 1 odds: HOU -157 | MIN +133 | O/U: 8.0


Perhaps the biggest item of note in this game is how the Astros will play at home. It didn't used to be such a question, but they were 39-42 this season in Minute Maid Park, putting them in the company of teams like the Pirates and Angels in terms of home performance. Their last three home series went like this: 

  • Lost two of three to the A's
  • Lost two of three to the Orioles
  • Swept in three games by the Royals

The Twins were 40-41 on the road, which is hardly inspiring, but it's not like the A's or Royals were even decent road teams.

Verlander on the mound for the Astros could help, but he's been inconsistent at age 40. He's had some great starts, but was also touched up by the Marlins, Yankees and A's in his time with the Astros.


I don't know what's going on with the Astros at home, but until they prove they have fixed it, I'm riding the wave. Pick: Twins 5, Astros 4