Defending champion Astros clinch playoff berth
Bob Levey / Getty Images Sport / Getty

The defending World Series champion Houston Astros are headed back to the postseason after clinching a spot by virtue of their 11-3 win over the Los Angeles Angels on Friday.

This is the fourth time in franchise history that the Astros have reached the playoffs in consecutive seasons, and the first since 2004-05 when they still played in the National League.

Houston's victory was highlighted by Yuli Gurriel's multi-homer game - on the same day his little brother Lourdes did the same in Toronto - while George Springer launched a titanic blast in the eighth that landed on Minute Maid Park's train tracks.

With the win, the Astros' magic number to win the AL West dropped to six. The second-place Oakland Athletics sit four games behind, pending the result of their game against the Minnesota Twins.

At 96-57, the Astros still have a chance to either match or surpass the franchise's best ever win total of 102 set back in 1998.

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Defending champion Astros clinch playoff berth
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