Thomas Ashworth, Sports Editor
On Tuesday, October 26, the Atlanta Braves traveled to Houston, Texas to take on the Houston Astros in the first game of the 117th World Series. For the Braves, this is their first time to the World Series since 1999. For the Astros, this is their third trip to the World Series in five seasons.
Former Astro Charlie Morton, who helped the Astros win the World Series in 2017, took the mound for the Braves in game one. He went up against Framber Valdez, who pitched eight innings in game five of the ALCS against the Boston Red Sox.
The Braves struck quickly, as Jorge Soler hit a home run on the third pitch of the game to put the Braves up 1-0. This home run by Soler the first leadoff home run in World Series history. After a stolen base from Ozzie Albies, Austin Riley came up to bat with an RBI double to put the Braves up 2-0.
In the second inning, the Braves were able to advance their lead as Soler grounded into a fielder’s choice as d’Arnaud was able to score to put the Braves up 3-0.
The Braves were able to score in three consecutive innings as Adam Duvall hit a two-run home run, letting him and Rosario come home. This home run put the Braves up 5-0. After Duvall’s 387 foot home run. Valdez was pulled after only two innings. Valdez racked up eight hits, five earned runs and a walk while only striking out two. Yimi Garcia came in to relieve him.
In the bottom of the third inning, Charlie Morton was hit by a comebacker that, later announced by the Braves, fractured his right fibula. According to a press release on the Atlanta Braves’ Twitter, “He will miss the remainder of the World Series and is expected to be ready for Spring Training in 2022.” A.J. Minter came in relief of Morton after the injury.
In the bottom of the fourth, the Astros were able to put a run on the board as Chas McCormick grounded into a fielder’s choice, letting Kyle Tucker come home to make the score 5-1.
A.J Minter was pulled after setting a new career high in pitches with 43. In 2 ⅔ innings, Minter racked up three hits, one earned run and struck out three.
After a sacrifice fly by reigning National League MVP Freddie Freeman, Dansby Swanson was able to run home and add another run to the Braves’ scoreboard, making the score 6-1 with the Braves leading in the middle of the 8th.
Yordan Alvarez was able to put up a run for the Astros after a groundout by Carolos Correa in the bottom of the 8th allowed him to run home, making it a 6-2 ballgame with the Braves still leading. A great throw by NLCS MVP Eddie Rosario got Yuri Gurriel out at second after his hit was playable off the wall of Minute Maid Park, ending the eighth inning for the Astros.
After two force outs followed a leadoff walk in the bottom of the ninth, Braves closer Will Smith ended the game as the Braves took a 1-0 lead over the Houston Astros in the World Series. A.J. Minter was credited with the win out of the bullpen.
Game 2 of the World Series will take place on Wednesday, October 27th at Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas. The first pitch will be at 7:09 p.m. CST.
For the Astros, Jose Urquidy will take the mound for game two. Urquidy started game three of the ALCS, pitching 1⅔ innings and ranking up five hits, five earned runs, two walks and striking out one.
Atlanta will start 2020 First-Team All-MLB pitcher Max Fried in game two. Fried started games one and five of the NLCS against the Los Angeles Dodgers, pitching a total of 10⅔ innings. In that time, Fried racked up a combined 16 hits, seven earned runs and two walks while striking out eight.