THE MATCHUP

The Houston Astros and Los Angeles Dodgers have met over 700 times, more than any pair of teams to meet in the World Series, because Houston began as an NL expansion club in 1962 and didn't switch to the AL until 2013. The Astros are the first team to win a pennant in each league; they were swept by the Chicago White Sox in 2005 in their only other World Series appearance. The Dodgers are making their first World Series appearance since 1988, when Kirk Gibson's dramatic home run in Game 1 helped Los Angeles beat the Oakland Athletics in five games.

PROJECTED LINEUPS

Houston Avg. HR RBI

CF George Springer .283 34 85

3B Alex Bregman .284 19 71

2B Jose Altuve .346 24 81

SS Carlos Correa .315 24 84

1B Yuli Gurriel .299 18 75

C Brian McCann .241 18 62

LF Marwin Gonzalez .303 23 90

RF Josh Reddick .314 13 82

Los Angeles Avg. HR RBI

CF Chris Taylor .288 21 72

SS Corey Seager .295 22 77

3B Justin Turner .322 21 71

1B Cody Bellinger .267 39 97

RF Yasiel Puig .263 28 74

2B Logan Forsythe .224 6 36

C Austin Barnes .289 8 38

LF Kiké Hernandez .215 11 37

PROJECTED ROTATIONS

Houston W-L ERA

LH Dallas Keuchel 14-5 2.90

RH Justin Verlander 15-8 3.36

RH Charlie Morton 14-7 3.62

RH Lance McCullers Jr. 7-4 4.25

Los Angeles W-L ERA

LH Clayton Kershaw 18-4 2.31

LH Rich Hill 12-8, 3.32

RH Yu Darvish 10-12 3.86

LH Alex Wood 16-3 2.72

Relievers

Houston W-L ERA

RH Ken Giles (34 saves) 1-3 2.30

RH Chris Devenski 7-8 4.77

RH Will Harris 3-2 2.98

LH Francisco Liriano 6-7 5.66

Los Angeles W-L ERA

RH Kenley Jansen (42 sv) 5-0 1.32

RH Brandon Morrow 6-0 2.06

RH Kenta Maeda 13-6 4.22

LH Tony Watson 7-4 3.38

ABOUT THE ASTROS

The A.J. Hinch-managed Astros led the majors in scoring this season while winning the AL West by going 101-61, then bounced Boston in four games before surviving a seven-game ALCS with the Yankees. New York kept the Astros bats quiet for the first five games, but Houston came alive in the final two to win the pennant. Altuve (.400, five home runs), Gurriel (.366) and Correa (nine RBI) have been Houston's best hitters this postseason. The Astros will lean on Keuchel and Verlander, both Cy Young Award winners. Verlander is 9-0 since getting traded to the Astros on Aug. 31 and is 4-0 with a 1.46 ERA over his postseason career. The bullpen has not been as reliable, with the Yankees roughing up relievers Devenski, Harris and Joe Musgrove.

ABOUT THE DODGERS

Because Los Angeles went an MLB-best 104-58, manager Dave Roberts' club will have home-field advantage, a new rule for the World Series this year. The Dodgers, champions of the NL West for five years in a row, swept Arizona in the NLDS and dethroned the Chicago Cubs in five games in the NLCS. Turner is hitting .387 with 12 RBI over eight postseason games, while Puig is hitting .414. Kershaw is only 6-7 with a 4.40 ERA in 21 postseason games, but the three-time Cy Young Award winner is 2-0 this October with a 3.63 ERA. The bullpen pitched 17 scoreless innings against the Cubs, and Jansen has been nearly flawless at the end.

NEWS SERVICES

In Scoreboard: Dodgers and Astros postseason statistics. C9