The long journey for the Dodgers that began on the fields of Camelback Ranch a little over eight months ago is finally over. And although it was a season which many fans of the club will not soon forget, the Boys in Blue will soon regroup and begin yet another ambitious quest less than four months from this autumn evening.
The Astros defeated the Dodgers 5-1 in Game 7 of the World Series at Dodger Stadium on Wednesday to capture the franchise’s first-ever World Championship. Houston plated all the runs they needed over the first two innings, capitalizing on a second consecutive rough outing from Dodgers’ righty starter Yu Darvish.
Outfielder George Springer once again ignited the Astros’ offense early, when he led of the game with a double down the left field line. Next, on a grounder off the bat of Alex Bregman, rookie first baseman Cody Bellinger threw away a ball to Darvish covering first, which allowed Springer to score. Bregman then swiped third base, and eventually scored on a Jose Altuve groundout. Darvish retired Yuli Gurriel to end the first inning limiting the damage to two runs, but it was clear early that Darvish did not show up to the ballpark with his most potent arsenal.
The Dodgers offense threatened many times during the evening, but found themselves unable to drive baserunners home when it counted most—a theme in which fans were very familiar during the worst strings of the regular season when Los Angeles was at their worst.
The Dodgers would leave the bases loaded in the first inning, two runner stranded in the second, and another two in the third before finally being retired in order in the fourth inning. In all, Los Angeles stranded 10 baserunners on the evening.
In the top of the second frame, Darvish began the inning by allowing Brian McCann to walk, then after a Marwin Gonzalez double to right-center field, Springer lifted a home run to the left-center field bleachers to extend the lead to 5-0. Those five would be all the runs the Astros would need.
Darvish was pulled when Brandon Morrow entered the contest in he bottom of the second, which was the exact same point when he was yanked in Game 3 last week. He ultimately surrendered five-runs—four earned—on three hits and one walk.
Staff ace Clayton Kershaw was called upon in the third inning, holding Houston in check through the seventh. Kersh threw four full scoreless innings total, allowing only two hits while striking out four on 43 pitches.
In the fifth inning, the Dodgers threatened yet again, but left runners on first and second base to end the frame. Los Angeles was finally able to get on the board in the bottom of the sixth when Andre Ethier singled to right and drove home Joc Pederson.
Kenley jansen and Alex Wood both succeeded Kershaw in relief, and combined for three innings of scoreless baseball.
Houston manager A.J. Hinch pulled righty Lance McCullers after just 2-1/3 innings of work, but used a recipe of Brad Peacock, Francisco Liriano, Chris Devenski and Charlie Morton to hold the Los Angeles offense at bay.
Morton was credited with the win, and Darvish registered the loss.
Springer, who homered in four straight games and hit five home runs total in the series, was named as the World Series Most Valuable Player.
The game took just three hours and 37 minutes.
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