The Houston Astros have created quite an uphill battle for themselves after losing the first two home games of the World Series to the Washington Nationals.
The World Series now moves to Washington for three games in Nationals Park with the Astros finding themselves having to win four of the remaining five games. Not the ideal situation to say the least, but not impossible.
Teams that have been down two games to none, have won the World Series 13 times out of 84 chances and those that lost the first two at home have prevailed three out of 25 times. So as you can see, it can be done, and if anyone can do it, it’s the 2019 Astros team that won 107 games this year.
Last night’s game started out with the two opposing pitching stars, Justin Verlander and Stephen Strasburg, each giving up two runs in the first inning. But both pitchers then settled down, throwing five scoreless innings with the game still all knotted up at 2-2 in the sixth.
When Verlander came out to pitch in the seventh inning with 99 pitches already credited to his name, he immediately surrendered a home run to catcher Kurt Suzuki and then walked Victor Nobles. Verlander’s night was done.
Ryan Pressly, who almost didn’t even make the roster due to a knee injury, came in for relief of Verlander. Pressly wasn’t able to stop the bleeding, allowing five more runs, as all nine Nationals batted around. Josh James came in to end the inning getting Suzuki, who started it all, to ground out to Carlos Correa. But the damage was done, Washington was up 8-2.
The Nationals were able to tack three more runs on in the following inning courtesy of Josh James and Hector Rondon. The game is now pretty much out of reach at 11-2 as the home crowd starts to thin out. Both teams added one more run apiece in the final inning resulting in a 12-3 Washington victory.
Justin Verlander was, however, able to get into the record books by reaching 202 strikeouts in World Series play, coincidentally overtaking Fox commentator John Smoltz. On the flip side, Verlander also became the only pitcher in history to lose the first five games pitched in the World Series.
After a much needed day off today for the Astros to reflect and collect themselves, the series now moves to Washington. Zack Greinke is scheduled to pitch game three facing Anibal Sanchez, as the Astros seek to win their first game and make this Series more of a competition. If they could only get their offense to play as they did in the regular season, this World Series isn’t over by any means.