World Series Score: JD Realmudo’s Home Run Game 1 vs. Astros Grab Game

The Philadelphia Phillies defeated the Houston Astros 6-5 on Friday night in a drama-filled Game 1 of the 2022 World Series. The Phillies have come back from a five-run deficit and now have a 1-0 lead in the best-of-seven series. JT Realmuto hit Luis Garcia’s game-winning home run in the 10th inning to hand Houston its first loss of the 2022 postseason.

The Astros took a 5-0 lead behind a pair of Kyle Tucker home runs. The Astros outfielder took Phillies starter Aaron Nola deep in both the second and third innings. The Phillies got back into the game in the fifth inning against Astros ace Justin Verlander.

The score remained tied until the bottom of the ninth when Jose Alduy singled and stole a base to put himself in scoring position. Nick Castellanos made an impressive sliding grab to send the game into extra innings. That’s when Realmuto homered and the Phillies were able to pick up the win (despite the Astros getting the winning run in scoring position against David Robertson) and steal Game 1 on the road.

Tucker hits two home runs

Kyle Tucker hit two home runs in Game 1. Became first player with multi-homer effort in World Series Brandon Lowe did this for the Tampa Bay Rays in Game 2 of the 2020 Fall Classic.

Tucker’s first home run came in the second inning and put the Astros up 1-0. His second, a three-run shot, extended Houston’s lead to 5-0 in the third:

Tucker became the first left-handed batter this season to hit a home run against Aaron Nola’s changeup, and became the fourth player to hit a homer in their first two World Series. The previous three were Jean Denes, Andrew Jones and Pablo Sandoval, Most recently in the 2012 World Series.

Verlander makes history in starts, but throws in the leadoff

Justin Verlander He became just the second pitcher in three decades to record a World Series start, joining Roger Clemens. He joined another former Red Sox ace in Jon Lester in a different category, His 12th career Game 1 start.

Verlander appeared in good position to record his 16th career postseason win early on. He didn’t allow a baserunner through the first three innings while the Astros pushed him to a five-run lead. Things fell apart in the fourth inning, however, as he allowed five of six batters to reach one point, cutting the lead to 5-3.

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Verlander would be given one more inning, but that would prove to be a mistake. Brandon Marsh doubled, Kyle Schwarber walked, and then Alec Bohm doubled to tie the game at 5-5. Before his night was over, Verlander threw five innings and allowed five earned runs on six hits and two walks.

While Verlander has a reputation as a big-game pitcher, he entered the night with a 5.68 ERA in seven World Series starts. Friday’s performance raised that number to 6.07, the highest mark of any pitcher who pitched at least 30 innings in the World Series.

The Phillies erased a five-run deficit

You understand that the Phillies don’t realize they’re not supposed to be here. They were the third-seeded team in the regular season and the No. 6 seed in the postseason, a seed that didn’t exist until this year. They must lose to the Cardinals in the wild card series or the Braves in the NLDS. And yet, here they are in the World Series.

No one told the Phillies to go quietly after falling behind 5-0 early in Game 1. After Justin Verlander retired the first 10 batters he faced, seven of the next nine hitters and eight of the next 10 reached base. At one point, the Phillies reached base four straight with two outs in the fourth inning, including by Nick Castellanos (RBI single) and Alec Bohm (two-RBI double).

According to Inside Edge, the Phillies have strung together three or more hits with two outs on three occasions this postseason, after doing so an MLB-best 27 times in the regular season. All other teams have done it a total of three times this October.

Philadelphia officially erased a 5-0 deficit in the top of the fifth inning. Verlander needed 36 pitches to get his first nine outs and 54 pitches to get his last six outs. It wasn’t until his final pitch — No. 90 of the night — that Verlander missed a swing and a breaking ball.

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Eradicating a five-run deficit is only half the battle. The Phillies still had to find a way to get past a run in the sixth to have a chance to win the game, and they had to do it against an excellent Astros bullpen. It’s not going to be easy.

Realmuto broke the deadlock in the 10th

As mentioned above, Phillies catcher JD Realmudo hit the first extra-inning World Series home run in franchise history in the 10th inning, giving Philadelphia a 6–5 lead. That will end up being the final score. It was the first extra-inning home run in a World Series game by a catcher since Carlton Fisk’s walk-off blast in 1975..

Realmuto’s home run came on a fastball by Luis Garcia:

CBS Sports noted coming into the series that Realmudo was the Phillies’ best hitter against the surging fastballs., as Garcia offers. From the above article:

During the regular season, Realmuto was the Phillies’ best hitter against fastballs with at least 18 inches of induced vertical distance — a fancy way of saying pitches that deviated from the pitcher’s hand to the plate by a foot and a half. . Realmuto batted .435/.567/1.130 against those pitches.

Overall, Realmudo finished the evening 2 for 4 with a pair of extra-base hits and three runs batted in.

Thompson tackled very aggressively

Once they tied the game, Phillies manager Rob Thompson immediately went to his best relievers. Here’s how Aaron Nola used his bullpen after he picked up the first pitch in the fifth inning:

  • Ace lefty reliever Jose Alvarado entered in the fifth inning to face the left-right-left line of Yordon Alvarez-Alex Bregman-Kyle Tucker. Alvarado retired the trio.
  • Zach Eflin, who became the starter, came on to face the bottom of the inning with one out in the sixth. He had four outs and an infield single and a walk.
  • Lefty and no. 3 starter (and potential Game 3 starter) Ranger Suarez entered with two outs to face the Alvarez-Breckman-Tucker lane in the seventh. He struck out the first two before allowing a single to Tucker.
  • Ceranthony Dominguez, the Phillies’ top reliever, replaced Suarez in the eighth. At that point, the game was on the line with every pitch, so Thompson was at his best. Dominguez had five strikeouts.
  • David Robertson, Thompson’s best remaining reliever, got the 10th inning after Realmuto’s home run. He put out runners on second and third.
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Thompson used his bullpen aggressively, but didn’t compromise anyone’s availability for Game 2. Alvarado only threw seven pitches, Eflin 20, Dominguez 24, and Robertson 25. Nothing as intense as 30-40 pitches. Suarez threw 11 pitches and could start Game 3 on Monday without any problems. Thompson’s use of the bullpen was balanced — aggressive but not reckless.

Five Phillies relievers held the Astros to four hits and two walks in 5 2/3 innings. Philadelphia had a chance to steal Game 1 on the road and claim home field advantage, and Thompson went for it. He used his best pitchers in the biggest spots of the game and couldn’t manage the day, and his reward was a 1-0 series lead.

The Phillies ended Houston’s winning streak

Going into Game 1, the Astros were a perfect 7-0 this postseason. They won the Seattle Mariners in the ALDS and the New York Yankees in the ALCS before falling to the Phillies in 1 game. Seven straight wins to start a postseason is one short of the all-time record. Here is the list:

  1. 2014 Royals: 8 wins
  2. 2022 Astros: 7 wins
  3. 2020 Braves: 7 wins
  4. 2007 Rockies: 7 wins
  5. 2017 Dodgers: 6 wins
  6. 2016 Cleveland: 6 wins

Notably, five non-Astros teams on that list have not won a World Series. A bad omen? Maybe, but I’ll say this more: I’d rather go winless than my first seven games of the season. Houston’s winning streak is over, but not the World Series. They could beat Philadelphia four times in the next six games.

Next

Game 2. Historically, teams that win Game 1 of the best of seven have won the series 64 percent of the time, although the Game 1 winner has won each of the last four World Series and 16 of the last 19. World Series. Again, a higher power may be at work:

Kyle Schwarber gave America free tacos with his seventh-inning stolen base. Anyway, Game 2 is Saturday night at Minute Maid Park. Lefty Framber Valdez (17-6, 2.82 ERA) and righty Jack Wheeler (12-7, 2.82 ERA) are the projected starters.

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