Astros edge Dodgers in thriller

Sec­ond-high­est score for a los­ing team in his­tory

Kuwait Times - - Sport -

HOUS­TON: Alex Breg­man sin­gled home Derek Fisher with the win­ning run in the 10th in­ning and the Hous­ton Astros reached the brink of their first World Se­ries ti­tle Sun­day by out­last­ing the Los An­ge­les Dodgers 13-12 in a ten­sion­packed thriller.

The Astros seized a 3-2 lead in Major League Baseball’s best-of-seven fi­nal and can claim the crown by win­ning game six on Tues­day in Los An­ge­les. The Dodgers, seek­ing a sev­enth cham­pi­onship and their first since 1988, must win to force a win­ner-take-all sev­enth game on Wed­nes­day. In an epic game that mir­rored the mo­men­tum swings a drama-filled se­ries has pro­duced, the out­come was de­cided after five hours and 17 min­utes by standouts for each club.

Astros catcher Brian McCann started the de­ci­sive rally by tak­ing first base when struck in the right arm by a pitch from Dodgers clos­ing pitcher Ken­ley Jansen, who then walked Ge­orge Springer to put the win­ning run on sec­ond base. The Astros in­serted pinch-run­ner Fisher and Breg­man fol­lowed with a sin­gle to left field that sent Fisher rac­ing across the plate ahead of a des­per­ate throw that was too late to pre­vent the de­cid­ing run and an emo­tional cel­e­bra­tion by the Astros and their fans.

It was the sec­ond-high­est score for a los­ing team in World Se­ries his­tory, the only sim­i­lar slugfest in the event’s 113 edi­tions be­ing Toronto’s 15-14 game-four win at Philadel­phia in 1993. The Astros led 12-9 in the ninth and were one strike from vic­tory be­fore the Dodgers equal­ized.

Yasiel Puig smashed a two-run homer into the left-field stands off Hous­ton re­lief pitcher Chris Deven­ski with one out to pull the Dodgers within 12-11. It was the 22nd homer of this World Se­ries, break­ing the to­tal homers mark of 21 set in 2002, and the game’s sev­enth com­bined homer for both teams, match­ing a Se­ries record from 1989.

Austin Barnes fol­lowed with a double and took third on Joc Ped­er­son’s ground out to short­stop. Dodgers lead­off bat­ter Chris Tay­lor was down to his last strike be­fore rip­ping a sin­gle up the mid­dle to score Barnes and level the game. Hous­ton’s Yuli Gur­riel smacked a two-out, two-run double in the Astros’ half of the ninth to put a win­ning run in scor­ing

Springer misses a div­ing catch at­tempt

po­si­tion but Josh Red­dick flew out to force ex­tra in­nings.


Cody Bellinger tripled in En­rique Her­nan­dez in the sev­enth after Astros cen­ter­fielder Ge­orge Springer missed a div­ing catch at­tempt to give the Dodgers an 8-7 edge. Hous­ton’s Breg­man then sin­gled and scored on Jose Al­tuve’s double, and Car­los Cor­rea fol­lowed with a two-run homer that gave the Astros an 11-8 lead. The Dodgers an­swered in the eighth, Ped­er­son blast­ing a double off the left-field wall and scor­ing on Corey Sea­ger’s double. But Brian McCann smacked a solo homer to boost the Astros’ edge to 12-9, set­ting up the ninthin­ning drama.

The Dodgers seized a 7-4 ad­van­tage in the fifth in­ning after Astros re­lief pitcher Collin McHugh walked Sea­ger and Justin Turner then sur­ren­dered a three-run homer to Bellinger, who was bat­ting only 2-for-17 with 10 strike­outs in the World Se­ries.

But the Astros equal­ized in the bot­tom of the fifth on Al­tuve’s three-run homer over the left-field wall.

DODGERS SQUAN­DER BIG LEAD Dodgers star left-han­der Clay­ton Ker­shaw, 3-0 in the play­offs, al­lowed four runs in the fourth in­ning as the Astros pulled level, the first time this year Los An­ge­les squan­dered a four-run edge.

Gur­riel, whose con­tro­ver­sial racist ges­ture in game three aimed at Dodgers’ Ja­panese pitcher Yu Darvish did not re­sult in a World Se­ries ban, smashed a three-run homer after a run-scor­ing Cor­rea double. Gur­riel was sus­pended for the first five games of the 2018 cam­paign for his game three ac­tions. Astros left-han­der Dal­las Keuchel, game one’s los­ing pitcher, sur­ren­dered four runs off five hits and an er­ror over 3 2/3 in­nings in the short­est play­off out­ing by a Hous­ton starter. The Dodgers jumped ahead 4-0 as Lo­gan Forsythe hit a two-run sin­gle, Her­nan­dez scored from third on an er­rant throw by Gur­riel and Forsythe scored on a Barnes sin­gle. — AFP

HOUS­TON: Derek Fisher #21 of the Hous­ton Astros slides in to home plate scor­ing the game win­ning run dur­ing the tenth in­ning against Austin Barnes #15 of the Los An­ge­les Dodgers in game five of the 2017 World Se­ries at Minute Maid Park yes­ter­day.—AFP

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