The Rays had one foot in the World Series, three games to the good in the 2020 American League Conference Finals. But you just can't keep the Astros down, and the Texans have pulled it all the way back to 3-3. It all means an unmissable decider tonight and we'll help you how to get a Rays vs Astros live stream - no matter where in the world you are.
Game 7 of the 2020 ALCS between the Rays and Astros takes place on Saturday, October 17 at 8.37pm ET / 5.37pm PT.
It's being shown by TBS in the US and full streaming details can be found below - take your preferred MLB coverage wherever you are with a VPN (opens in new tab).
It wasn't meant to be like this. The abridged MLB 2020 season was supposed to be the year when the New York Yankees waltzed their way through the American League and into an overdue World Series. Well, it wasn't to be.
It was the unfancied Tampa Bay Rays that vanquished those Yankees in the deciding game of their five-match series. Formed less than 20 years ago, the Rays are seeking their second trip to a World Series and will be brimming with confidence. Despite that, the Astros went in to this one as favorites, having taken the American League pennant in two of the last three years.
But the Rays took first blood in game 1 with a 2-1 victory - Randy Arozarena once again on hand to deliver a postseason home run for the Rays. Before a first innings three-run homer from Manuel Margot was enough to secure a 4-2 win on Monday night and then a defensive masterclass helped them to a 3-0 lead.
But then came the comeback, with a narrow game 4, and then walk off homer from Carlos Correa made it back-to-back 4-3 wins. And with a resounding win last night, the Houston franchise have all the momentum.
All games in the series will played out of Pecto Park in San Diego, home of the Padres, with the winners facing the victor of the Braves vs Dodgers series in the NCLS for a World Series showdown at the Globe Life Field starting Tuesday, October 20.
Follow our guide as we explain how to watch the next stage of the MLB playoffs and live stream Rays vs Astros in the ALCS from just about anywhere.
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How to watch MLB blackout games and stream baseball from abroad
A VPN - or Virtual Private Network in full - is becoming an essential bit of kit for baseball fans for two reasons. Firstly, to get around MLB's blackout rules that hamstring the use of its otherwise comprehensive MLB.TV (opens in new tab) streaming service. VPNs generally help you get around this by allowing you to relocate your IP address to a different location and watch as if you were somewhere entirely different.
Secondly, VPNs are great if you're abroad and want to access the same streaming services you do at home. Some of our favorite platforms like Sling TV (opens in new tab) and BT Sport are geo-restricted, so if you're out of the country on holiday or vacation you won't necessarily be able to access the services and content you pay for back home.
Again, a VPN is your friend here as it will let you dial back in to a domestic server location and therefore access the same MLB live stream you would in your home country. But which one to choose?
ExpressVPN is the best overall VPN in the world
(opens in new tab)We've tested hundreds of Virtual Private Networks over the years and can confidently say that ExpressVPN is the #1 VPN in the world right now. It's easy to install, a breeze to use, offers fast speeds and robust security features - and even comes with 24/7 customer support.
Compatible with nearly anything you can imagine, a single ExpressVPN subscription will let you use the software across all your devices, including Smart TVs, Fire TV Stick, PC, Mac, iPhone, Android phones, iPads, tablets, consoles, Apple TV and more.
Check out ExpressVPN for all your MLB streaming needs. You get the benefit of a quibble free 30-day money back guarantee (opens in new tab) to give it a whirl, and the benefit of 3 months extra FREE if you commit to an annual plan.
2020 ALCS full schedule
Game 1: Rays won 2-1
Game 2: Rays won 4-2
Game 3: Rays won 5-2
Game 4: Astros won 4-3
Game 5: Astros won 4-3
Game 6: Astros won 7-4
Game 7: Saturday Oct. 17, 8.37pm ET / 5.37pm PT / 1.37am BST / 11.37am AEDT
MLB playoffs live stream: how to watch ALCS in the US
The 2020 ALCS is being shown by TBS on TV, which means that you can also watch online or on the TBS mobile app if you have your cable details at hand.
MLB.TV (opens in new tab) doesn't appear to have the rights to show any of the remaining postseason games live, as they'll be completely blacked out. If you're from another territory that would have access and find yourself in the US for the ALCS games, then you'll hampered by these local blackout restrictions - but you can get around this by taking the VPN route (opens in new tab), per our guide above, and pointing your computer back to a server in your own country.
How to watch MLB playoffs on local TV
Regional TV networks are baseball fans' bread and butter, bringing you day-in, day-out coverage of all your local team's games. Examples include WDAE and Fox Sports Sun (Tampa) and KBME (Houston).
They'll typically have a streaming option built-in to their website, which you'll be able to access by signing in with details of your TV provider.
How to watch MLB playoffs without cable
If you don't have cable but still want to see the Rays and Astros do battle, you're in luck. There are plenty of over-the-top streaming services that will let you watch, and most have free trials. We've listed the most popular below - roughly in order of how appealing they are to us as baseball fans and limited to those that have TBS. All prices are per month.
- Sling TV (opens in new tab) $55 - All the cable channels a baseball fan needs to watch the biggest games in one place. A combined Sling Blue and Orange package for $45 covers ESPN, TBS and Fox Sports, while $10 adds Sports Extra and MLB Network (plus NHL Network, NBA TV, beIN Sports, ESPN U, Tennis Channel and more). On balance, our favorite option and you can try a FREE Sling TV trial (opens in new tab) - but note local coverage is limited.
- Hulu $54.99 - A good option, Hulu with Live TV includes ESPN, ESPN2, Fox, FS1 and TBS but does not come with the MLB Network. It does, however, offer local networks in select markets. Free trial offered.
- AT&T TV Now (opens in new tab) $55 - Another solid offering, AT&T TV Now gets you ESPN, Fox Sports and TBS but, again, not MLB Nework. Local TV coverage is available in select markets. Free trial offered.
- YouTube TV $64.99 - The best option after Sling, YouTube TV includes ESPN, ESPN2, Fox, FS1, MLB Network and TBS. Many local networks and regional networks are also covered, six accounts are included in the price, and a free trial is available.
How to watch MLB playoffs: live stream baseball in Canada
Baseball fans with a cable subscription will be able to watch these games on Sportsnet. Alternatively, you can sign up to Sportsnet Now, which is perfect for cord-cutting fans in Canada and costs $9.99 for a 7-day pass or from $16.67 a month if you sign up for a longer term.
The other great option is again MLB.TV (opens in new tab), which is available in Canada, with only the Blue Jays subject to blackouts.
And don't forget that using a VPN (opens in new tab) is the way to get an MLB playoffs live stream if you're away from Canada when the game you want to watch is on.
How to watch Rays vs Astros live stream in the UK
BT Sport has the rights to the MLB playoffs in the UK, and you'll find all the channels you need available through one of BT’s many TV bundles (opens in new tab), or as an add-on for Sky TV (opens in new tab) and Virgin Media (opens in new tab) customers.
For cord cutters, BT now offers the option of watching BT Sport without locking yourself into a lengthy contract by way of its £25 Monthly Pass.
If you find yourself outside the UK and want to watch one of the MLB playoff games, don't worry about geo-blocks on your account – simply grab a VPN (opens in new tab) and follow the instructions above to live stream the action.
How to live stream the Rays vs Astros ALCS in Australia
If you live in Australia and want to watch the MLB playoffs then ESPN (available through Foxtel) will be broadcasting the game, and you can also stream it to your laptop or mobile device using the Foxtel Go (opens in new tab) app, but you’ll need your Foxtel ID to access the app.
Thankfully, the excellent Kayo Sports (opens in new tab) is also showing the MLB playoffs Down Under.
The streaming service has a Basic and a Premium plan, with the difference being you can watch on two devices with the Basic plan for $25 per month and on three devices with the Premium plan for $35 per month. The best news? Both plans come with a FREE 14-day trial (opens in new tab), so if you're looking just to watch a specific game or two you can cancel after the 14 days.
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MLB 2020 - format changes
There were a number of rule changes in place for the 2020 MLB regular season due to its shortened nature. The three you really need to know about are:
- The designated hitter (DH) position has been added to National League batting orders
- Relief pitchers are required to face a minimum of three batters
- Games that go to extra innings will see teams start with a runner on second base