Giancarlo Stanton remained out of the New York Yankees lineup for the third straight game and Aaron Hicks was moved up to third in the batting order for Game 4 of the AL Championship Series against the Houston Astros.
Limited by injuries to 18 games during the regular season, Stanton homered in the series opener and missed the next two games because of a strained right quadriceps.
Stanton ran on the field before Thursday’s game, and manager Aaron Boone said he felt better for the first time since the injury. Boone said Stanton was available to pinch hit and could be New York’s designated hitter for Game 5 on Friday night.
Hicks was 0 for 2 with two walks in Game 3 on Tuesday, his first start since he injured his right elbow on Aug. 3.
New York trailed 2-1 in the best-of-seven series going into Game 4 on Thursday, a day after rain forced a postponement.
First baseman DJ LeMahieu was leading off, followed by right fielder Aaron Judge and Hicks in center. Second baseman Gleyber Torres hit cleanup, followed by designated hitter Edwin Encarnación, left fielder Brett Gardner, catcher Gary Sánchez, third baseman Gio Urshela and shortstop Didi Gregorius. Masahiro Tanaka was on the mound.
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