Yankees fans took to the streets after beating the Guardians in Game 5, and had some fun at Jose Altuve’s expense before the Astros series.
The sign-stealing scandal continues to cast a shadow on the Astros success, even five years later. While several members of that 2017 team have since come out and defended Jose Altuve, stating that the All-Star second baseman was vehemently against their cheating system, he will always be associated with that tainted World Series trophy.
For better or worse, that earns Altuve some added motivation from opposing fanbases. Yankees fans — whose team Altuve’s Astros defeated on their way to that 2017 pennant — are perhaps the loudest.
After defeating the Cleveland Guardians in the ALDS to advance to a matchup against said Astros (the 2022 edition), Yankees fans once again took Altuve’s name in vane.
Will Yankees fans regret Jose Altuve chant?
It’s far from the first time fans in the Bronx have told Altuve to f— himself. It won’t be the last, as Houston is set to play at least two games at Yankee Stadium in the ALCS.
As for Altuve himself, he could probably use a jolt. The second baseman has struggled to get going at the plate this postseason. He went 0-for-16 against the Mariners in the ALDS, including 0-for-8 in the 18-inning Game 3.
“I wasn’t focused on getting my pitch, and that’s what I worked on in the season and all season long and what has worked for me,” Altuve said, per MLB.com. “And I didn’t do that in these first three games.”
Dusty Baker, as well as Altuve’s Astros teammates, have confidence in him to break out of this tough stretch. Eventually, that time will come — and why not against the Yankees?
“The mentally strong have a way of dealing with the down times,” Astros manager Dusty Baker said. “We just have to increase concentration and focus. And when you’re in a downward spiral, man, sometimes it’s hard to get out. I don’t care who you are. But I’m expecting big things out of Altuve — because he expects big things out of himself.”
That concentration should be at an all-time high comes Wednesday.