Down Howie Kendrick reached and off it went. Carrying far, slicing right, pinging the yellow-coated steel screen of the foul pole in right field. The Washington Nationals were trailing until they weren’t. They were, true to form, down but not done.
The late-May misfits and National League Wild Card Game winners roundly expected to be a quick October exit had, with one swing of the bat from the 36-year-old Kendrick, taken the lead they would not relinquish in a 6-2 victory in Game 7 of the World Series against the Astros on Wednesday night at Minute Maid Park. They claimed their franchise’s first crown and completed a clean sweep for the road clubs in a first-of-its-kind Fall Classic.
Max Scherzer, making his cortisone-aided comeback from the debilitating neck injury that had made him a no-go for Sunday night's Game 5, didn’t have his typical movement or mastery. He induced just 11 swinging strikes among his 103 pitches in five innings. A viewer only able to tune in every 20 minutes or so would be forgiven for thinking that the Astros had somehow been given permission to begin every inning with two aboard.
And yet, through four innings, the eight baserunners against Scherzer had resulted in just a single run -- Yuli Gurriel’s laser beam to the Crawford Boxes for a homer that put the Astros up, 1-0, in the second.
The Astros and Nationals battled it out for 7 games. Check out all the action from the amazing series!
Gerrit Cole, a pending free agent, wasted no time distancing himself from the Houston Astros Wednesday night as the star pitcher donned a baseball cap bearing his agent's logo and telling reporters he was "not an employee of the team."
Cole, one of the front-runners for the American League's Cy Young award this season, warmed up but did not appear for the Astros as they slipped to a crushing Game 7 defeat against the Washington Nationals in the World Series.
When he spoke to reporters after the game, Cole told an Astros spokesperson, "I'm not an employee of the team," before adding "I guess as a representative of myself..."