The Astros won World Series Game Three behind stingy pitching and timely hitting.
After falling behind 2-0 in the World Series, the Astros finally snapped out of their funk. They got some excellent pitching and, lo and behold, managed some hits with runners in scoring position to defeat the Nationals 4-1 on Friday.
The Astros went 4-for-10 with runners in scoring position in Game Three, which is worlds better than what they’ve done through most of the playoffs. They still left 10 runners on base, but we’ll certainly take the improvement.
By contrast, it was the Nationals who truly struggled to get clutch hits. They went 0-for-10 with runners in scoring position and left 12 men on base. The tables finally turned in that stat for the Astros.
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Zack Greinke battled through traffic on the basepaths through his entire outing. He only went 4.2 innings, and thus didn’t qualify for the win, but he got the job done. He allowed one run on seven hits and three walks with six strikeouts.
The Nationals biggest threat came in the fourth inning when Victor Robles hit an RBI triple with one out. But Greinke got pitcher Anibal Sanchez to strike out on a bunt attempt and Trea Turner to ground out.
The Astros bullpen was an absolute lockdown unit. The combination of Josh James, Brad Peacock, Will Harris, Joe Smith and Roberto Osuna yielded just two hits and two walks in 4.1 scoreless frames, striking out seven.
Harris in particular was tough as nails yet again. He came in with a pair of runners on base and got out of the jam, and then threw an extra inning for good measure. He has not allowed an inherited runner to score this postseason.
The Astros weren’t perfect with runners in scoring position, but their .400 average on the night was a vast improvement. Michael Brantley had two of those hits, driving in Jose Altuve both times. For his part, Altuve smacked two doubles in the game.
Josh Reddick drove in the game’s first run with a bloop single to score Carlos Correa in the second inning. Robinson Chirinos added a solo homer off the left field foul pole in the sixth to provide the final margin.
The Astros will send Jose Urquidy to the mound in Game Four as they attempt to even the World Series at two games apiece. The Nationals will counter with lefty Patrick Corbin, who threw an inning of relief in Game One. First pitch is at 7:07 p.m. tonight.