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Verlander gem helps Astros force Game 7

(Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

(TSX / STATS) -- HOUSTON -- Justin Verlander continued his masterful pitching in elimination games and the Houston Astros turned a breakthrough fifth inning into a 7-1 victory over the New York Yankees on Friday night at Minute Maid Park in Game 6 of the American League Championship Series.

Verlander (2-0) twirled seven shutout innings to help carry the Astros into a decisive Game 7 at home on Saturday night. He allowed five hits and issued one walk while recording eight strikeouts, extending his streak of consecutive scoreless innings in elimination games to 24.

Despite allowing a single in each of his first three innings, Verlander was largely untested until the sixth. By then he held a three-run lead, courtesy of an Astros rally in the bottom of the fifth.

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AL Earned Run Average
Rank Name ERA
1 C. Kluber, Cle2.25
2 C. Sale, Bos2.90
3 L. Severino, NYY2.98
4 M. Stroman, Tor3.09
5 E. Santana, Min3.28
6 C. Carrasco, Cle3.29
7 D. Pomeranz, Bos3.32
8 J. Verlander, Hou3.36
9 A. Cashner, Tex3.40
10 S. Gray, NYY3.55
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NL Earned Run Average
Rank Name ERA
1 C. Kershaw, LAD2.31
2 M. Scherzer, Was2.51
3 S. Strasburg, Was2.52
4 R. Ray, Ari2.89
5 G. González, Was2.96
6 Z. Greinke, Ari3.20
7 L. Lynn, StL3.43
8 J. Nelson, Mil3.49
9 J. Arrieta, ChC3.53
10 J. deGrom, NYM3.53
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