After going down 5-0 early, the Phillies rallied back to take game one. Let’s see how they got there.
Astros Take Early Lead Over Phillies as Nola Struggles
The Astros have built a reputation over the season of being one of the hardest teams to strike out in the league. Nola took that in stride, recording back-to-back strikeouts against Jose Altuve and Jeremy Pena to begin the bottom of the first. He then allowed a walk to Yordan Alvarez before forcing a pop-up from Alex Bregman to end the inning.
Kyle Tucker then led off the bottom of the second inning with a solo home run off a 1-1 changeup from Nola. Now with a 1-0 lead, Yuli Gurriel plunked a single into the outfield looking to get a rally going for the Astros.
Following a strikeout from Trey Mancini, Chas McCormick hit an opposite-way single into right field, putting runners on the corner for the Astros. Catcher Martin Maldonado then slipped a ball the opposite way to a shifted Phillies’ defense, scoring Gurriel and moving McCormick to third. The Astros’ rally, however, was cut off at two runs as Jose Altuve hit into a 6-4-3 double play to end the inning.
The Astros were not finished however. Pena led off the bottom of the third with a double. After a groundout from Alvarez, Bregman reached base on a full-count walk. Tucker then crushed a home run into center field, becoming the firs Astro with a multi-home run game in the World Series, and increasing their lead to 5-0 over Nola and the Phillies.
Phillies Get on the Board
With one out in the top of the fourth, Rhys Hoskins hit the Phillies’ first hit of the day, a single into center field. After a sharp liner back to Verlander (dropped and thrown to first) put the second out on the board, Bryce Harper put a second man on the base path with a single of his own.
Nick Castellanos then followed up with a back-to-back single, scoring Hoskins and putting the Phillies on the board. With two runners on, Alec Bohm stroked a first-pitch double down the left field line, scoring both runners to make it a 5-3 ballgame.
Bryson Stott then stepped up to the bat next, working a 10-pitch, full-count walk to put two runners back on. One of the pitches, an inside curveball, was fouled directly off Stott’s right foot, putting the game in a momentary injury timeout. Jean Segura then popped out to end the inning, one which the Phillies got on the board, cutting into the Astros’ lead.
Aaron Nola then returned to the mound in the bottom of the fourth, earning his first one-two-three inning. Brandon Marsh then led off the top of the fifth with a double down the left-field line. A full-count walk from Kyle Schwarber then put two runners on for the Phillies.
The Best Catcher in Baseball, also known as J.T. Realmuto, then stepped up to the plate, slapping a double into left-center field. Marsh and Schwarber both scored on the play, tying the contest up at 5-5.
Calls to the ‘Pen
After striking out Pena to begin the bottom of the fifth, manager Rob Thomson pulled Nola from the contest, bringing in Jose Alvarado to shut down the Astros. Alvarado then finished the second consecutive 1-2-3 inning for the Phillies with a groundout to Alvarez and a strikeout to Bregman.
The Astros then relieved Verlander to start the top of the sixth as Bryan Abreu entered the contest.
In the bottom half of the inning, Alvarado earned a fly-out to Tucker before Zach Eflin entered in relief with one out. Gurriel then beat out a throw from Eflin on an infield single, a dribbler on the left side of the infield.
Later, with two outs, McCormick reached base on a full count walk to put two runners on against Eflin. Neither run would score, however, as a ground ball to Bohm from Martin Maldonado ended the inning.
With one out in the top of the seventh, Schwarber then reached base on an infield single, a ball up the middle that ricocheted off of Abreu. Later, on a ball to Realmuto, speed-king Schwarber stole the first base of the World Series to put a runner in scoring position for the Phillies.
Realmuto then finished out a five-pitch walk, passing the bat to Bryce Harper with two runners on base. Harper made it back-to-back walks, loading the bases for Nick Castellanos. Former Phillie Hector Neris entered the game, striking Castellanos out on a 2-2 splitter outside. With a chance to take the lead, the Phillies left the bases loaded in the top of the seventh.
With the score stuck at 5-5 in the top of the ninth inning, the Astros turned to closer Ryan Pressly with Marsh, Schwarber, and Hoskins due up. The trio went down 1-2-3, opening the door for the Astros in the bottom of the ninth.
Seranthony Dominguez retired two batters in the bottom of the eighth before remaining in the in the bottom of the ninth. Dominguez struck out both McCormick and pinch-hitter Christian Vazquez before returning to the top of the order in Altuve.
Altuve blooped a single into centerfield. Castellanos then made a diving play on a fly ball from Pena, recording the final out of the inning and forcing Game One of the World Series into extra innings.
J.T. Realmuto led off the top of the 10th inning against Luis Garcia. After working a 1-2 count full, Realmuto slammed a 97.5 MPH fastball into the right field seats, giving the Phillies their first lead of the game at 6-5.
Bryce Harper was up to bat next, slinging a single into left field, putting a runner on first with zero outs. Castellanos then hit into a fielder’s choice, replacing Harper at first with one out on the board. Alec Bohm then hit a ground ball down the third base line, moving Castellanos to second as third baseman Bregman was forced to settle with one out at first.
With two outs and a runner on second, Ryne Stanek entered the game for the Astros to face Bryson Stott. Stott worked a full-count walk, putting two runners on base for Jean Segura. Segura, the only member of the Phillies’ lineup to not reach base on the day, lined out to Bregman to end the inning.
“These next three outs are going to be hard”J.T. Realmuto to Ken Rosenthal following his solo home run
Phillies seal the win
With Yordan Alvarez, Alex Bregman, and Kyle Tucker due up in the bottom of the 10th, the Phillies turned to David Robertson to close the game out. After Alvarez fouled off four pitches, Robertson got Alvarez swinging on a knuckle curveball in the dirt to claim out number one. Bregman then connected on a 1-2 knuckle curve, driving it off the left field wall, barely outside of the reach of Schwarber, as he cruised into second base with a double.
Tucker, having hit two home runs already on the day, stepped up to the plate as the game-winning run. Robertson’s knuckle curve was the pitch of choice yet again, getting Tucker swinging on a 2-2 count as Robertson beat the slugger for out number two.
A first-pitch wild pitch increased the pressure as both runners advanced to scoring position with the tying run just 90 feet away from scoring. On a 2-0 count, Diaz leaned in on a slider, getting hit in the process. The umpire called it a dead ball and ball three. Two pitches later, Diaz grounded out to Edmundo Sosa, in at third base for Alec Bohm, to end the ball game.
Inside the Stats
The Phillies’ bullpen came through in a big way on Friday night. Jose Alvarado, Zach Eflin, Ranger Suarez, Seranthony Dominguez, and David Robertson combined to pitch 5.2 scoreless innings, allowing only four hits overall. Dominguez earned the win while Robertson recorded the save in the bottom of the 10th.
J.T. Realmuto led the charge on the night for the Phillies, going 2-for-4 with a home run and three RBI. Meanwhile, Nick Castellanos went 1-for-5 on the night with his biggest contribution coming in a diving stop in the bottom of the ninth.
With a 1-0 lead over the Astros, the Phillies will turn to Zack Wheeler in Game Two of the World Series on Saturday night against Framber Valdez. Game Two, like all seven of the World Series games, is scheduled for an 8:03 P.M. first pitch.
Photo Credit: AP Photo/David J. Phillip