Houston Astros World Series: Team needed a swift punch in the mouth

Houston Astros outfielder Michael Brantley (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Houston Astros outfielder Michael Brantley (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) /

The Houston Astros fell to the Washington Nationals in a 5-4 decision last night and it was the best thing that could’ve happened to them. Why? Let’s look.

Houston Astros fans — our beloved team gave a valiant effort but they succumbed to the power of the Washington Nationals’ bats last night.  To be honest with you, I wasn’t expecting the level of firepower that the Nats used against them last night.

But they’re just as hungry as the home team is as they’re playing in their first World Series since 1924.  You’d have to be a damn fool to say that they’d roll and let the Houston Astros embarrass them in front of a global audience.

It was actually quite the contrary — these two teams battle tremendously, all the way down the wire and throughout the course of the game, one still had an inkling that the Houston Astros still had a chance to climb out of their deficit and seize Game 1.

They almost did.

George Springer‘s shot to center-right at the bottom of the eighth inning was just two feet shy of clearing Adam Eaton‘s glove to be a potential game-tying, two-run homer morphing into a double that happened to get Kyle Tucker to score, allowing the Houston Astros close-in within one run (5-4).

Just based on how the game started with Yuli Gurriel doubling off Max Scherzer to get Springer and Jose Altuve to put the team up 2-0 in the bottom of the first goes to show how relentless this team was to throw the first punch.

But the Nats smacked back with a Juan Soto and Ryan Zimmerman homer,  a single from Eaton scoring Kurt Suzuki and another Soto gem of a double that brought in Anthony Rendon and Victor Robles.

This is truly a team that knows how to convert when runners are in scoring position and that has been a problem for the Houston Astros at times this season.

Gerrit Cole had perhaps his worst outing that I could remember, having won 19 consecutive decisions over the past five months since May 22.

He just didn’t have it against a talented Nats’ lineup but I think he will redeem himself if he gets the opportunity to pitch again this season which will be likely because this series is likely going to go longer than we expect.

Cole finished with six strikeouts, five earned runs but just one walk through 7.0 innings of work.

Scherzer, on the other hand, was quite brilliant after being rattled by the Houston Astros early in

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the game.  The only two runs that were charged to him were the ones that Gurriel batted in at the bottom of the first inning and he finished with seven punch-outs and three walks.

There is still no concern at the moment in regard to the Houston Astros‘ chances of winning this series as the franchise is 0-3 in Game 1’s throughout their history.  One of the losses did turn out to be fruitful for the team to get its first championship, the other was an outlier to a disappointing end to a magical season.

What will this loss entail?  We’re about to find out…

Although the Game 1 winner has one 18 out of the last 22 World Series that have been played, I still like the Houston Astros‘ chances and they need this punch in the mouth to jolt themselves back into to focus at the task at hand.

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They can do this — let’s go Houston Astros — good luck tonight!