The Yankees took the Astros nearly to the brink. The Nationals are taking things one step further.
For the fourth time since 2014, we get a Game 7 in the World Series. Regardless of the participants, that’s tremendous. After the Nats were 15 outs from elimination Tuesday night, it’s that much sweeter.
What a game Tuesday was. For as snore-worthy the first five games were at times, Game 6 didn’t lack for drama. Alex Bregman and Juan Soto’s dueling bat carries. The Eaton and Soto homers to vault Washington ahead of Verlander and Houston. Whatever that was with the interference call in the seventh inning before Anthony Rendon homered.
The manager of the winning team got ejected!
So the season comes down to Game 7. Dare I say it, the Nationals should be favored. They have Max Scherzer, Patrick Corbin, Anibal Sanchez, Sean Doolittle and Daniel Hudson ready to go while Houston has Zack Greinke, a tired Gerrit Cole and their bullpen. Still, picking against Houston might be a fool’s errand.
You might be thinking, “This should be the Yankees.” You wouldn’t be wrong. They had their chances to beat Houston — holding them to .179/.281/.318 batting line and fewer home runs in the six-game series — but they came up short. That loss is going to sting for a while, whether or not the Astros win the title.
If you haven’t been watching this World Series for that reason, it’s time to put that to the side. Game 7 doesn’t have to be about hate-watching the Astros. Instead, you can take joy in the marvelous run the Nationals are on. Watch Scherzer give his all after enduring “ungodly pain” in his neck just a couple of days ago and flash his ungodly intense stare towards the batter’s box. Appreciate Zack Greinke’s super-slow-mo curveball.
Oh, and Soto. Has there been a more fun player to watch this postseason (non-Yankee edition)? He’s only 21, in case you missed it.
Soto has a chance to become the youngest World Series MVP ever if the Nationals claim the series and Stephen Strasburg didn’t clinch it last night. Both Soto and Strasburg deserve it for clutch hitting and pitching, respectively, throughout the run, from the Wild Card Game to NLDS Game 5 to Tuesday. I’m dying to see Soto come up with another dinger in Game 7. He seems made for those moments.
Even if you hate both teams, tonight is the last baseball for a while. There are Yankees Classics to take you through February, but the live games are what it’s all about, even if weird umpire calls and the wrong team reign. The offseason can wait for one more day.
Enjoy Game 7. And Go Nats.