(Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
The defending World Series champion Houston Astros have been in a tough battle all season long in the American League West division.
This year, they have a new challenger in the Texas Rangers, who completely overhauled their starting rotation over the winter and have busted out of the gates to claim first place in the division.
However, the defending champs aren’t going to go down without a fight.
On Monday, the Astros and Rangers squared off at Minute Maid Park and engaged in a wild battle.
The Astros rallied from a late 9-6 deficit and ultimately walked off the Rangers, winning by a final of 10-9.
That win put the Astros just two games back of first place in the AL West.
On Twitter, MLB posted a graphic to celebrate Houston’s walk-off win.
Scoring is bigger in Texas.
The defending champs are just 2 games back in the AL West. pic.twitter.com/XRW4FwMfJZ
— MLB (@MLB) July 25, 2023
Despite the success of the Rangers, the Astros are still a team to pay attention to.
The defending World Series champions aren’t going to go down without a fight.
The last time Houston didn’t win the AL West was in 2020, but they still reached the ALCS despite only being a Wild Card team.
That may be what ends up happening this year, but the Astros have been the cream of the crop in the division since 2017 and remain a tough challenge for any opponent, even the Rangers.
The Astros are now 57-44 on the season and are in sole possession of the second Wild Card spot in the American League.
The defending champs cannot be counted out as we move closer to the stretch run of the season.
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